VIJAYAWADA: Joint Fact-Finding Committee (JFC) constituted by Pawan Kalyan’s Jana Sena Party (JSP) has made it clear that there is no substitute to Special Category Status (SCS) and stressed the need for the Central Government to honour the promise made to the state, along with implementation of various other provisions in the AP Reorganisation Act.
Disclosing the details of JFC in Hyderabad on Saturday, Pawan Kalyan said that the committee found that there was no alternative to Special Category Status and only with it justice could be done to the state, which, he said, suffered huge economic loss after the bifurcation.
Explaining the reason behind floating JSP, he said the bifurcation happened for political reasons, but people suffered. “At that time, several promises, including SCS to AP, were announced to compensate the loss of critical and essential assets like institutions and infrastructure.”
He said he had sincerely supported NDA believing in its assurance of justice to the state. “Now that those assurances are not being implemented, people are restless and questioning me. As I had supported them at that time, it becomes my moral responsibility to make facts clear. Hence, JFC was constituted,” he said.
According to him, one of the major benefits of SCS is that the State would get 90 percent funds from the Centre for centrally-sponsored schemes instead of the general 60 percent.
“In the first 100 days, I decided not to disturb the government, but when it started dragging its feet on it, I raised the issue at the Tirupati meeting. Before my Kakinada meeting, they made a midnight announcement of a special package, which I felt was like stale laddus and said the same. However, the TDP government welcomed it, as if those stale laddus were just good enough. However, till today, even those stale laddus were not delivered to the State,” he said.
He compared SCS to honey smeared on a monitor lizard by Chatrapati Shivaji to climb the hill fort. At the end of the day, the monitor lizard got the honey, but people of Andhra did not get SCS, though using it voters were lured by those who became MLAs and MPs and formed governments, he said.
Pawan Kalyan found fault with CM N Chandrababu Naidu for his conflicting and contradictory statements on the Special Category Status. He said Chandrababu Naidu first insisted on Special Category Status, then agreed to special package and now he is crying foul.
He said the promises made during bifurcation were to ensure state benefits from bifurcation, but industries and institutions of national importance which are vital for making it happen failed to come to the state.
“With the meagre amount given to educational institutions, full benefits could only be gained after two decades, which is only making people restless,” he said.
On Polavaram project, he wondered why the state government took it up when it is a national project. “I think the State Government should not have taken it up. Now it has lost its right to question the Centre and any delay in the project execution will be the responsibility of the State,” he said. Questioning the Centre’s stand that Vizag Railway Zone is not viable, he wondered how the state bifurcation was viable.