February 10, 2018
Concerned over growing intensity of protests by its ally, the Telugu Desam party and attempts of the Congress to fish in troubled AP waters, the BJP top brass in a late night development on Friday night accepted to meet the entire deficit of Andhra Pradesh.
According to sources in TDP, union ministers Arun Jaitley, Piyush Goel, Sujana Chowdhary and BJP chief Amit Shah went through the list of demands of the Andhra Pradesh government and conceded few of the demands in the hope that the protest by its key ally – TDP – and a partner in the NDA government get mollified and does not carry out its threat of intensifying the agitation further.
Coming close on the heels of Shiv Sena announcement of going it alone in 2019 general elections, the TDP pressure was something that the BJP could ill afford as a party that had ally trouble ahead of the assembly elections to three key states in north and central India.
Which is why, the BJP top brass accepted the meet the full revenue deficit in Andhra Pradesh that it inherited at the time of bifurcation.
The BJP leaders tried to find out ways and means to implement the special package that was promised to Andhra Pradesh by the central government, then headed by Manmohan Singh. The leaders accepted to release funds for Andhra Pradesh in one go, all the funds that it was to get during the past five years and not got.
Most of the projects in AP will get 90 per cent funding of the central government. The centre is also examining setting up several institutions, funds for several other projects, creation of railway zone with Visakhapatnam as its headquarters and setting up of a sea port at Dugarajapatnam. However, decision on these is still pending.