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Chandrababu Naidu may snap ties with BJP this week, ask two ministers to quit Modi cabinet

By Deepika

Chief minister Chandrababu Naidu is likely to set the separation process in motion beginning with the resignation of two TDP ministers Ashok Gajapathi Raju and Y S Chowdhary from the Narendra Modi cabinet. The two ministers could resign by Saturday, sources said.

Chandrababu Naidu

Speaking to reporters on Tuesday, Naidu reiterated that the Centre must fulfil "assurances made in Rajya Sabha, including Special Category Status, provisions quick implementation of the of AP Reorganisation Act.".

A majority of TDP MLAs in their interaction with Naidu on Tuesday favoured severing ties with the BJP in the wake of the persisting rift.

At the TDP Legislature Party meeting, all 125 MLAs and 34 MLCs, barring six absentees, strongly advocated ending the alliance with BJP, sources said.

Cracks in TDP-BJP alliance deepened after Budget 2018. TDP lawmakers disrupted Parliament by shouting slogans demanding that Andhra Pradesh is given central funding under a special status, promised to the state when it was bifurcated to carve out a new state Telangana.

Meanwhile, on Tuesday Rahul Gandhi waded into the tussle and said his party would grant special category status to Andhra Pradesh if voted to power in 2019.

"We will give special category status to Andhra Pradesh. It's the first thing we will do after coming to power in 2019," he told a group of party workers protesting at Jantar Mantar in Delhi to demand special status for the state.

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