Visakhapatnam: BJP national secretary and state party affairs in-charge Siddharth Nath Singh has said the Centre is unable to grant Special Category Status (SCS) to AP due to certain constitutional constraints. However, alternative efforts by the Centre are on to help the state in its overall development.
Blaming a section of the media and some political parties for “fooling” the public on special category status for AP, Mr Singh said all the political parties across the country, including those belonging to AP, have accepted the provisions of the 14th finance commission recommendations.
Under this, there is no provision for granting special category status to any state. Also, the 11 states that now have this status agreed to forego the special tag, and will be satisfied with additional devolution of funds, he noted.
Talking to the media here on Wednesday, Mr Singh said, “The BJP government had inherited the constitutional legacy left behind by the Congress government. It didn’t include a special category status provision in the AP Reorganisation Act. Nor has the 14th finance commission favoured that. We are not able to change the provisions through a parliamentary intervention, as we do not have sufficient numbers in the Rajya Sabha.”
Though there is no Special Category Status (SCS) for AP, the Centre considers the state as a Special Status State (SSS). Under certain provisions, the Centre has decided to make up for the revenue deficit by granting around Rs 22,112 crore to AP in the next four years. Of this, Rs 7,000 crore has already been sanctioned, Mr Singh said. He said a propaganda campaign was unleashed against the BJP and the TD-BJP coalition in the state by some political parties.
The combined Andhra Pradesh had received only Rs 98,820 crore between 2010 and 2015 through recommendations of the 13th finance commission during the Congress rule. For the residuary Andhra Pradesh, the BJP-led Union Government will give around Rs 2.6 lakh crore under the 14th finance commission recommendations.
The BJP leader also said that already Rs 1.43 lakh crore worth of projects have been sanctioned by the Centre to AP in the last two years....