‘Stall shifting of capital or sanction our mercy killing’: Andhra farmers write to President, say state govt’s policies act of 'revenge against people'

  • Farmers of Amaravati wrote a letter to President Ram Nath Kovind, urging him to accord permission for mercy killing as the government was pursuing a policy of revenge against people by shifting the state capital

  • On 27 December, the Andhra Pradesh cabinet had deferred taking a decision on relocating the capital

  • Chief Minister Jagan Mohan Reddy had indicated on 17 December that Andhra Pradesh could have three capitals as decentralisation was a real concept

Amaravati: Farmers of Amaravati on Tuesday wrote a letter to President Ram Nath Kovind, urging him to accord permission for "mercy killing" as the YS Jagan Mohan Reddy government was pursuing "a policy of revenge" against people of the region by deciding to shift the state capital.

 ‘Stall shifting of capital or sanction our mercy killing’: Andhra farmers write to President, say state govt’s policies act of revenge against people

File image of Andhra Pradesh chief minister Jaganmohan Reddy. Reuters

The farmers of Navuluru, in their letter to the President, sought his intervention to stall the process of shifting the capital or grant them permission for mercy killing. "We intend to die because all doors for solution have been closed and the government of Andhra Pradesh is pursuing revenge against the people of Amaravati. We cannot withstand the onslaught of the government through police force. We opine that death is an ultimate form of protest against the governments that do not guarantee constitutional rights," the farmers said.

They recalled that farmers of the region voluntarily gave up their fertile agricultural lands for building the state capital after the bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh in 2014. Finalisation of the capital was done after all parties unanimously passed a resolution (in the Legislature) in favour of Amaravati, they recalled.

During the 2019 election campaign, Jagan Mohan Reddy had promised that Amaravati would be continued as the capital, but once he came to power, he backtracked, they said. "It is in this backdrop that we, with our families, have come on to the streets and are protesting for the past 14 days against the shifting of Amaravati. Nobody from the government is paying an ear to our woes," the farmers lamented.

On top of it, leaders of the ruling YSR Congress, including ministers and legislators, have been mocking them and communalizing the issue in the name of caste and religion, they alleged. "We are raising this supposedly strange demand (for mercy killing) only to highlight our plight and request your excellency to grant us permission," the farmers said.

On 27 December, the Andhra Pradesh cabinet had deferred taking a decision on relocating the capital, saying it wanted to wait for the report of an international consulting firm, which is expected to submit the report on 3 January.

Chief Minister Jagan Mohan Reddy had indicated on 17 December that Andhra Pradesh could have three capitals as decentralisation was a real concept. The existing capital Amaravati, which is only in the basic stages of development could become the "Legislative Capital", port city Visakhapatnam the "Executive Capital" and Kurnool the "Judiciary Capital", he had said.

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Updated Date: Jan 01, 2020 14:03:59 IST