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Special status row: Two TDP ministers resign from Modi cabinet

By Deepika

Two union ministers from the Telugu Desam Party (TDP) resigned, but the BJP's two ministers in the Chandrababu Naidu's state cabinet have quit this morning.

Chandrababu Naidu

The announcement was made by Andhra Pradesh chief minister and TDP chief Chandrababu Naidu after an hour-long meeting with party MPs, MLAs and cabinet colleagues.

Civil Aviation Minister Ashok Gajapathi Raju and Union Minister of State for Science and Technology Y S Chowdary are the two ministers who have been asked to resign from their respective offices.

The two TDP ministers in the Union Cabinet to met PM Narendra Modi at 6 PM today and submitted their resignation letter.

According to media reports, TDP MP and Union civil aviation minister Ashok Gajapathi Raju has sought an appointment with Modi to resign from the cabinet.

Backing the decision, YSR Congress chief Jagan Mohan Reddy on Thursday said all MPs from Andhra Pradesh should submit resignations to mount pressure on the Centre over the special status issue.

"All MPs should submit mass resignations and we should support each other in the no-confidence motion," Jagan said, adding that the state was bifurcated on the very condition that special status would be given.

Naidu directed two Telugu Desam Party ministers to resign from Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led cabinet amid the growing strain in ties between his party and the Bharatiya Janata Party over alleged neglect of the state in the Union Budget.

"This is our right. The Centre is not fulfilling the promises it made," said Naidu, who has been urging the Centre to give 'special category status' to Andhra Pradesh.

Naidu said he had tried to reach out to PM Modi to convey his party's decision before publicly announcing it, but in vain. "We have shown patience for four years. I tried to convince the Centre... The Centre is not in a mood to listen," he told reporters in Amravati, the capital of Andhra.

"FM Jaitley today not only denied special category status to Andhra Pradesh as promised under the state reorganisation Act but also spoke in a way of insulting and humiliating the state by trying to project as if we were making unjustified demands against national interests," said the Andhra CM.

BJP ministers resign from AP cabinet

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) members in Andhra Pradesh submitted their resignation from state cabinet, moments after Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu asked Telugu Desam Party (TDP) ministers to resign from the Union Cabinet.

The ministers, who have submitted their resignation, are State Health Minister Kamineni Srinivas and State endowment minister Pydikondala Manikyala Rao in Naidu's cabinet.

Naidu, adderssing the state budget session with commenced today, says BJP ministers from him Cabinet have resigned. "These ministers worked good in the state. They brought considerable reforms in their departments. I thank them for their services," he is quoted as saying by ANI.

Soon after Naidu's press conference, BJP MLA Akula Satyanarayana spoke to media and announced that the two BJP ministers in the state cabinet, namely Kamineni Srinivas and Paidikondala Manikyala Rao, will resign on Thursday morning.

On Wednesday, Jaitley said the Centre was committed to meeting all promises made to AP at the time of carving out of Telangana four years back but rejected its demand for a special status.

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A Pradeep Kumar - CPM
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