Wondering why Andhra Pradesh should pay Central taxes when it’s not getting any funds from the Centre, TDP president and chief minister N Chandrababu Naidu on Tuesday accused the BJP leadership of double standards and the Centre of step-motherly treatment towards the state while drawing a parallel with smart city Dholera in Gujarat, which, unlike Amaravati is flush with Central funds.
Armed with a video clip of Prime Minister Narendra Modi promoting the smart city Dholera and copies of utilisation certificates for Central funds for Amaravati Naidu sought to expose the BJP leadership which has accused him of submitting self-attested UCs.
He said although Gujarat has a big capital city the Narendra Modi-led Central government is promoting Dholera to be built at Rs 95,000 crore while it has not deliberately released funds for Amaravati despite the fact that after bifurcation AP does not even have a capital city.
“It has not been releasing funds deliberately to the state to take up works for capital construction. If the Centre does not release funds due to us why should we pay central taxes after all?” said Naidu who has been recently very vocal about federalism and its violations by the current NDA regime.
He went on to ask why AP does not have a similar capital city? “But Modi does not want it. That is why he is not releasing funds,” said the chief minister who went on to add that Amaravati could have contributed to the central exchequer through corporate tax, GST and income tax, once it was fully developed into a modern world class city while driving the entire economy of AP as well.
Before concluding his speech on the final day of the Mahanadu, a video clip of Prime Minister promoting Dholera was played and Naidu told party workers the evidence of step-motherly treatment was all there to see.
The political resolution at the end of Mahanadu as well as Naidu’s speeches have harped on Telugu pride and self-respect which have been hurt by national parties like Congress in the past and more recently by BJP.