Special category status sought for Rayalaseema

Lok Satta president Jayaprakash Narayan said in unequivocal terms that creation of Telangana was necessary but slammed the manner in which the Centre was going about the process, ignoring the spirit of federal set-up.

The Lok Satta leader’s assertion that creation of Telangana was not only necessary but inevitable was greeted by thumping of desks by TRS members during the debate on the AP Reorganisation Bill in the Assembly on Saturday. Describing how the Gentleman’s Agreement and other assurances were violated since the formation of Andhra Pradesh, he said the situation has come to such a pass that it was no longer possible to continue status quo.

Criticising political parties for looking only towards political gains, he said that change in the boundaries should not undermine the economic growth of any region or adversely affect the social intercourse among the people of different regions.

Dr. Narayan came out with a formula which sought Special Category Status to Rayalaseema as it would be worst hit in the event of State’s bifurcation. He also wanted the Centre to develop Telangana in a time-bound manner as also Seemandhra region in terms of infrastructure, setting up educational institutions, completing Polavaram project and Ramayapatnam port, besides addressing revenue deficit.

While Hyderabad had Rs.13,000 crore revenue surplus, Rayalaseema had a deficit of Rs.7,000 crore for 2012-13 and it was set to increase to Rs.9,000 crore . Conferring of Special Category Status on Rayalaseema would turn it a tax haven and investments would flow from different places and it would be a win-win situation.

The Lok Satta advocated separate State for Rayalaseema if the people of that region seek it. Later, speaking at a public meeting at Indira Park, the LSP chief said the party was ready to take over the reins in the State, whether united or divided, provided the people were willing to bring a change for the better.

It was time people were united against parties that were encouraging divisive politics by pitting people in the name of region, religion, caste and community against one another so that they did not question the parties’ iniquitous deeds. He claimed that LSP’s people’s movement were behind many landmark legislations.