Rajnath Singh assures Andhra-specific provisions, saves TDP-BJP alliance; AP MPs to continue protest in Parliament

The dissatisfied Telugu Desam Party (TDP) on Sunday decided to retain alliance with BJP after top leaders from the saffron party, including Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh, called up Andhra Pradesh chief minister and TDP president N Chandrababu Naidu and brokered peace, for now.

As Naidu held a crucial parliamentary board meeting with the party MPs and senior MLAs to review the alliance, he reportedly received Singh's call with an assurance that he will make a statement about provisions earmarked in this year's Budget for Andhra Pradesh, reported The Times of India

Calling on behalf of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, during the 16-minute conversation, Singh, according to a TDP leader reassured Naidu that "all grievances of TDP will be heard and addressed".

BJP president Amit Shah had reportedly also dialed Naidu and asked him not to make any hasty decisions.

File image of Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh. PTI

File image of Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh. PTI

TDP's meeting had come two days after the party, BJP's biggest ally in the South, expressed disappointment over finance minister Arun Jaitley's Budget, which it said, "did not address Andhra Pradesh's needs".

Following the internal meeting on Sunday, TPD stated that will not snap ties with the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA). "The TDP will not break its alliance with the BJP-led NDA," party leader and Union minister YS Chowdary said after the meeting.

He also clarified that Naidu did not speak to Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray, the BJP's bickering ally, as some media reports had claimed.

Responding to the reports of TDP being upset with BJP, Jaitley on Sunday, in an interview with CNN-News18, had said that the differences with the alliance partner will be amicably resolved and had exuded confidence that NDA will remain intact to face the 2019 General Elections to Lok Sabha together.

 “We are implementing the Andhra Pradesh reorganisation package separately. It has nothing to do with the budget. We will fulfill all that has been promised to the people of Andhra Pradesh,” Jaitley had told CNN-News18.

Some of the issues over which TDP is miffed are the implementation of a special financial package for the state, setting up of a railway zone, deficit finance, and schemes related to the development of Amaravati as the state capital.

"People (of Andhra Pradesh) are looking forward with anticipation. They (the Centre) have done something, but much more needs to be done. We will discuss these things in the next two-three days and try to work out a solution," Chowdary added on Sunday.

TDP to raise issue in Parliament

Though the TDP-BJP alliance is intact, for now, Naidu, has asked his party MPs to pressurise the BJP-led NDA government to undo the injustice in the Parliament.

At the TDP Parliamentary Board meeting in Amaravati, Naidu said that the party would begin its fight by raising the issue in the Parliament, sources revealed to IANS. He made it clear that this (the meeting) was only the first step. The TDP chief also said that the party's next course of action would depend on the response of the Modi government.

According to Deccan Chronicleparty members are set to hold a silent protest on Monday in front of the Gandhi statue in the Parliament premises with placards.

With inputs from agencies

Updated Date: Feb 05, 2018 12:29 PM

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