Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Chandrababu Naidu began his day-long fast demanding the longstanding special category status (SCS) for the state on Monday at Andhra Pradesh Bhavan in Delhi.
The AP CM first paid his respects at Raj Ghat before heading for the fast.
Naidu said before the fast, “We are seeking justice. We are a part of the country. I am asking national media to show solidarity to us. It is our duty to remind him when he is not protecting dharma. We are suffering because of the central government. We are here to unite the nation, the BJP is here to divide.”
Upping the attacks on PM Narendra Modi, Naidu said, “You spend so much time launching personal attacks on me that you forgot your promises. The personal attacks by the PM on me are unwarranted. You can criticise my work but you shouldn’t do personal attacks.”
The Telugu Desam Party (TDP) pioneered by Naidu had separated from the NDA in March 2014 for not granting SCS to Andhra Pradesh.
Naidu said, “If you won’t fulfill our demands, we know how to get them fulfilled. This is about self-respect of people of Andhra Pradesh. If there is an attack on our self-respect, we won’t tolerate it. I am warning this government and particularly the PM to stop attacking an individual.”
Earlier on February 10, the PM at a rally in Guntur jibed at Naidu’s protest as “worth only a photo session” to which Naidu replied, the PM is wasting money in poll campaigns.
A memorandum will be submitted by Naidu to President Ram Nath Kovind on February 12 regarding SCS.
The fast has got political support from various political opponents of the BJP. Congress President Rahul Gandhi, National Congress (NC) Leader Farooq Abdullah, Trinamool Congress Derek O’Brien, Samajwadi Party founder Mulayam Singh Yadav & other parties have their presence and support in this fast.
Gandhi said, “The PM has stolen from the people of Andhra Pradesh and given it to his industrialist friends.”
Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal, too, lent his support and said, “A Prime Minister is Prime Minister of the nation. The way he treats other political parties, it’s not like he is the Prime Minister of India, but Prime Minister of Pakistan.”
Two special trains have been arranged from Rayalseema and Uttarandha to support Naidu in Delhi.