Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Chandrababu Naidu reiterated his special status demand at the Niti Aayog Governing Council meeting.
New Delhi: Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Chandrababu Naidu was locked in an interesting exchange with
Union minister Rajnath Singh at a Niti Aayog meeting on Sunday, where the former reiterated his demand
for special status to his state.
Making a presentation before Prime Minister Narendra Modi, fellow chief ministers and several Union
ministers, Naidu exceeded the 7-minute slot allotted for participants.
Sources in Naidu’s office said that when Rajnath Singh tried to point this out to the Andhra CM, he reportedly
quipped, “Mine is a special state with special problems. I will take more time.” Naidu then went
onto speak for 20 minutes, sources added.
The Chief Minister had prepared a 13-page document to include all his major demands.
Naidu demanded a special category status (SCS) for his state focusing on non-fulfillment of assurances
made in Rajya Sabha, including Special Category Status and provisions of Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation
The Telugu Desam Party (TDP) chief found support for his demand when Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar
vouched for it and took the opportunity to call for a special category status for his state as well.
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee also supported Naidu’s demand and urged the Prime Minister
to grant SCS to Andhra Pradesh.
The Andhra chief minister also raised the issue of Polavaram project and claimed that the Centre is yet
to reimburse Rs 1,892 crore to the state government.
The southern state has also been opposing the terms of reference of the 15th Finance Commission which,
they feel, is penalizing states for performing well. Naidu found support from Banerjee on this issue as well
With the country grappling under agrarian crisis and all major farmer outfits demanding adoption of the
MS Swaminathan report, Naidu stressed on the need to prepare a roadmap to implement recommendations on
land reforms, irrigation, credit, insurance, food security, employment, farm produce and farmers’
The Andhra Pradesh chief minister also opposed the use of socio economic caste census (SECC) for
Ayushman Bharat scheme and claimed that it will limit the benefits to only 56 lakh families in the
Other major highlights of the speech included revenue deficit grant and funds for education