Chandrababu Naidu upset at Centre's game plan

Targeting the BJP-led NDA government for "disappointing" Andhra Pradesh, Chief Minister Chandrababu Naidu on Wednesday said the "political game" being played over the special category issue is "damaging" his credibility, which was built over the past 40 years.

Addressing a press conference as he concluded his meetings with political leaders in Delhi, Naidu accused the Centre of indulging in "mud-slinging" over the issue.

"It is very painful for us. We kept silent as ours was a new state. It was like a newborn baby. I followed it up 29 times with the Centre. The people of Andhra Pradesh feel betrayed by the treatment meted out by the Centre to the state,"

Naidu said as he played out three clips of Prime Minister Narendra Modi promising special category status to Andhra.

"Centre's treatment to Andhra Pradesh is damaging the credibility that I have built over last 40 years. Andhra Pradesh is fighting with the Centre and I am Centre's attitude," he said, adding that the bifurcation of the state has brought down Andhra's per capita income to 10.96 %, the lowest compared to other southern states.

The BJP countered Naidu's comments with HRD Minister Prakash Javadekar saying, "We believe in Sabka Saath Sabka Vikas (development for all). Even though the TDP has gone away from us, our commitment to the people of Andhra Pradesh is firm".

Earlier in the day, Naidu met his Delhi counterpart Arvind Kejriwal as part of efforts to mobilise support for the no-confidence motion moved by the TDP against the Centre. They also discussed the issue of special category status.

"The Delhi chief minister said he would offer support to the TDP through members from his party in both houses of Parliament," TDP Rajya Sabha MP C M Ramesh said.

Met other leaders

On Tuesday, Naidu met a host of leaders in the Parliament's Central Hall from Congress' M Veerappa Moily and Jyotiraditya Scindia to NCP's Sharad Pawar, as well as some leaders from the NDA allies, such as Harsimrat Kaur and Apna Dal's Anupriya Patel.

During his meetings, Naidu, who was one of the prominent leaders during the coalition governments in the 1990s under the United Front and the A B Vajpayee-led NDA government, sought to portray his anti-BJP stance loud and clear as he did not meet any prominent BJP leader.

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