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Chandrababu Naidu’s TDP part ways with BJP

The Telugu Desam Party led by the Andhra Pradesh chief minister has decided to call quits on its alliance with the BJP-led NDA. The two central ministers from TDP – Minister of State for Science and Technology YS Chowdary and Civil Aviation Minister Ashok Gajapathi are set to meet Prime Minister Narendra Modi today to hand over their respective resignations. Two ministers from BJP in the Andhra Pradesh state cabinet have already handed over their resignation.

The announcement was made last night at the brief press conference called by Mr Naidu. He termed the decision to be a “painful decision” but said it was necessary and completely in the interest of the state. The TDP has made an alliance with the NDA just before the 2014 assembly elections.

The relations between the central government and TDP have been in a conundrum for the last few months now and TDP lawmaker Ravindra Babu has called it a logical step. TDP has been asking for Andhra Pradesh to be given “special status” from the central government ever since it came into power.

Mr Naidu and other lawmakers from TDP have been openly expressing their disappointment since the Union Budget has been presented by finance minister Arun Jaitley last month saying that the budget has completely neglected Andhra.

The situation soured on Wednesday evening when Mr Jaitley said that giving a “special category status” to Andhra was not possible. “The Centre cannot say now that all the funds that I have will now be given to the states and I have no money because after all the security of India is a Central responsibility”, said Mr. Jaitley. The Andhra Chief Minister called Mr Jaitley’s words to be “hurtful and insulting” alleging that the statement suggests that TDP is asking for money at the expense of the country’s security.

The chief minister in his press meeting yesterday also told that just before the announcement, he had tried calling the Prime Minister. “It is my responsibility as a coalition partner to inform the prime minister about our party decision. My OSD spoke to his OSD but the prime minister did not come on line”.

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