Proposal to allot 100 Assembly seats
The Telugu Desam Party proposes to allot one-third of the Assembly tickets in the 2014 general elections to candidates belonging to the Backward Classes, apart from getting ready to make a pre-poll promise of allocating a whopping Rs. 10,000 crore for BC welfare or 25 per cent of the State budget.
After a series of meetings with senior party leaders on Saturday, the TDP president N. Chandrababu Naidu is said to have decided on a string of sops to consolidate its vote bank, pertaining to the Backward Classes and the Scheduled Castes. He told a meeting of BC leaders that he would announce the names of a hundred BC candidates at least a year before the elections.
He said the party would strive for creation of a separate Ministry for BC Welfare at the Centre, apart from seeking a Central BC Commission with judicial powers. When some leaders reminded him of his promise of 100 seats to BCs in the last elections, he said only 65 could be allotted because of the pressure due to the alliances with the CPI (M), CPI and TRS.
Among those present were senior leaders T. Devender Goud, Y. Ramakrishnudu, K. Yerran Naidu, Nama Nageswara Rao, Bojjala Gopalakrishna Reddy, Jaipal Yadav, MLC B. Venkateswara Rao and Kalava Srinivas. The resolutions are expected to be finalised at a meeting of the TDP’s State Executive on Sunday before announcing it officially.
Another significant decision the party is expected to announce its full-fledged support for categorisation of Scheduled Castes, a move that would give them much-needed advantage to the Madiga sub-caste in education and employment. However, this was opposed by some of the Mala leaders in the party.