Will stonewalling of the proceedings of Parliament by the Telugu Desam Party be a feature of the monsoon session opening on July 18?
Prospects are high considering that the ruling party in Andhra Pradesh is seeking wide support to move a no-confidence motion against the Narendra Modi government as part of its strategy to step up campaign on the state being denied Special Category Status (SCS) following the reorganisation of the erstwhile Andhra Pradesh in 2014.
The TDP had earlier moved a no-confidence motion during the budget session in March.
The party had also accused the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance of not allocating enough funds for Andhra Pradesh in the Union Budget this year. Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan refused to take up the notices for the no-confidence motion citing that the House was not in order.
State chief minister and TDP strongman N Chandrababu Naidu has again sought to move the no-confidence motion against the Centre’s failure to grant SCS. “I wish to bring to your notice the grave injustice caused to Andhra Pradesh due to inconsistencies in the AP Reorganisation Act, 2014 and non-implementation of the assurances made by the then Prime Minister on the floor of the Rajya Sabha on February 20, 2014,” Naidu said in a letter to political parties. Naidu said it was unfortunate to note that the BJP-led NDA government did not even “respect its 2014 election manifesto relating to Seemandhra”.
Disinterest in the implementation of the assurances and promises by the NDA government has led to severe hardships to the people of Andhra Pradesh, Naidu alleged. The CM said in view of the continued “adamant attitude of the BJP-led NDA government”, the TDP has decided to move a no-confidence motion against the Modi government.
Significantly, the Congress has accepted the TDP’s request for support and said the no-confidence motion will be deliberated upon by the Congress Parliamentary Party before a decision is taken.
The TDP, which pulled out of the NDA in March this year, by reaching out to 18 regional parties, including the TRS in Telangana and the AIMIM in Hyderabad, is going all out to canvass support and getting it too.
There will be wider support for the Naidu’s plan considering that even members of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Home Affairs, at their first meeting on July 13, slammed the Modi government for not fulfiling any of the provisions made as part of the Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Act.
Former home minister P Chidambaram, chairman of the standing committee, berated the bureaucrats for their lackadaisical approach in making a presentation which had few details and for giving “incoherent replies” to the questions posed by the members.
As the presentation had no new information other than what is already in the public domain they asked for a fresh presentation with definitive details and calling Andhra Pradesh government representatives to the next meeting.
All this is grist for Naidu’s mill in pitching his demand for a better deal to Andhra Pradesh and keeping the issue alive in garnering support during the elections in 2019. But the challenge will be in finding sustainable ways to walk his talk.
(Courtesy of Mail Today)