The State government, which had been maintaining that there was no need to release a white paper on Central assistance extended to the State post-bifurcation, on Friday hinted at coming up with more than one white paper, after the BJP yet again hit back at its ally with a progress report on the implementation of the AP Reorganisation Act titled, “The real picture”. Not just that, it released a status report comparing the BJP’s claims with its own.
While the two sides sparred, more or less reiterating their arguments, Jana Sena chief and actor Pawan Kalyan’s joint fact finding committee met at a hotel in Hyderabad to check the veracity of their claims. The panel, which is in the process of gathering information, shortlisted important issues and formed a sub-committee to finalise its own report, which could be quite a task.
The differences between the BJP and the TDP on the quantum of Central assistance seem irreconcilable. Speaking to the media at the Interim Government Complex in Velagapudi, HRD Minister Ganta Srinivasa Rao ridiculed BJP’s progress report released by Visakhapatnam MP Haribabu terming it a “documentary” and pointed out that it omitted the crucial question of revenue deficit.
“The state is thinking of releasing four to five white papers explaining the funds the state received from the Centre after state bifurcation. This is to clear the prevailing confusion. TDP is ready for a debate on figures cited by the BJP,” he said.
Dismissing state BJP chief Haribabu’s claims that several institutes sanctioned by the Centre went for admissions, the HRD Minister said as against the required `9,136 crore for all the seven central institutes, just `770 cr was given.
At the same time, the state government, besides giving about 2,400 acres, also spent Rs 72 crore on infrastructure. The Centre is also yet to sanction the Central University and Tribal University, Ganta said adding that that IIT and IISER in Tirupati, IIM in Visakhapatnam, and NIT in Tadepalligudem are functioning from private engineering colleges, while IIIT Kurnool is functioning from Kanchipuram in Tamil Nadu.
The TDP also mailed its status report to Pawan Kalyan. The Jana Sena chief’s JFC formed a sub-committee comprising retired bureaucrats
Padmanabhaiah, IYR Krishna Rao and Chandrasekhar to look into the AP State Reorganisation Act implementation. JFC member Jayaprakash Narayan said the panel will place its report before the people in a week. Following the first day’s deliberations, Pawan Kalyan tweeted that the panel will file an RTI application seeking details of the status of assurances given to the State and funds disbursed till date.
Another JFC member and former MP Undavalli Arun Kumar felt the one-upmanship between the TDP and YSRC would not be fruitful and opined that there was no point in the two parties asking their respective MPs to resign. “They should grill the Centre in Parliament. What is the use of resignations? Even people seem to be take in by this kind of gestures. No one tells them to do their duty, which is to speak in Parliament,” he said.
Speaking at the fag end of the meeting, Pawan found fault with the TDP government for giving an assurance to the fishermen that they would be given quota and then, forgetting about it. The result was that tribals and fishermen ended up clashing, he recalled and warned that empty promises would lead to discontent and even disintegration of the country. “I had said this when I met Narendra Modi before the 2014 elections. Empty assurances cause disenchantment,” he said and narrated how the poor from Andhra suffered during and after the Telangana movement. #KhabarLive