BJP candidate says he will take up Statehood issue in Parliament

April 02, 2024 11:28 pm | Updated April 03, 2024 06:56 am IST - PUDUCHERRY

BJP candidate A. Namassivayam, addressing the media at party office in Puducherry on Tuesday. BJP Puducherry unit President and Rajya Sabha MP, S. Selvaganapathy, is also seen in the picture.

BJP candidate A. Namassivayam, addressing the media at party office in Puducherry on Tuesday. BJP Puducherry unit President and Rajya Sabha MP, S. Selvaganapathy, is also seen in the picture. | Photo Credit: S.S. KUMAR

Home Minister and BJP candidate for Puducherry Lok Sabha constituency A. Namassivayam on Tuesday resolved to take up the issue of Statehood and inclusion of the Union Territory under the ambit of recommendations of Finance Commission in Parliament if he was elected from the seat.

In his first press conference after the party decided to field him from the seat, the Home Minister said as an elected representative he would raise both the issues in Lok Sabha.

When pointed out that the stand taken by the Centre in the past was to not accord Statehood, the BJP candidate said “certain decisions are taken based on the then prevailing situation. That doesn’t mean it cannot be reconsidered. I will take the Statehood issue in the right direction. If voted, I will work with the government and Prime Minister on the Statehood issue.. It is my personal assurance.”

Drawing the attention of the different stands taken by the Union Government on Pattanoor land belonging to the Anglo French Textiles and 750 acres acquired for Special Economic Zone, he said there were instances when the Union Government reverted its own stand.

The Centre had earlier rejected the proposal allowing sale of Pattanoor land. Now, permission was given to sell the land. Similarly, the 750 acres of land acquired at Sedarapet was remaining idle for more than a decade for want of clearance. After the issue was taken up at the appropriate forum, sanction was given for utilisation of the land for industrial purpose, he said.

The Union government had also adopted a stand on recruitment of government school teachers through UPSC. After the issue was taken up with MHA, permission was given for recruitment by the territorial administration itself, he said.

The Congress has no right to speak on Statehood as the party, while in government at Centre and in Puducherry, failed to alter the status of UT, he added.

“This election is different because of general consensus that Prime Minister Narendra Modi was set to return to power. Already, we have a BJP government in Puducherry and if the elected representative is also from the same party it would benefit the territory,” he said.

The Congress candidate, he said was on the back foot after the debacle the party had faced in the 2021 Assembly elections. In 2019 Lok Sabha polls, the Congress fought with the support of 15 legislators and now they are down to 2, he said.

“If they are on a strong wicket as claimed by them, the Congress would not be sitting in Assembly with two MLAs. Also, those who worked for the Congress in 2019 Lok Sabha polls have left them,” he said.

PM to campaign in Puducherry

Mr Namassivayam said the Prime Minister would campaign for the BJP in Puducherry. Details of Prime Minister’s visit would be announced later, he said.

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