Bluntly criticizing the central government, Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu said, the Narendra Modi government is adopting a "divide and rule policy" to spoil his state's relationship with Telangana. He accused Prime Minister Modi of "cheating" his state. The Chief Minister was interacting with the students at the Knowledge Summit Programme in Vijaywada on Thursday.
"Telangana and Andhra Pradesh are like brothers. The centre is creating differences between both the states. The centre is adopting a divide and rule policy," said the Chief Minister. He also accused the centre of "not helping the southern states."
"Southern states are the developed ones, paying high taxes. But through the 15th Finance Commission, the developed states are being penalized. The states with less population will get lesser devolutions. Such proposals hamper southern states. We are opposing it," said Mr Naidu.
Mr Naidu said that he joined the NDA and supported Prime Minister Modi for the sake of Andhra Pradesh's development. "I supported Prime Minister Modi keeping in mind the future of the state. But the BJP-led NDA government didn't help us. He (PM Modi) cheated us," said the miffed Chief Minister. Despite centre's non-cooperation, Andhra Pradesh is developing in "leaps and bounds" and in the recent quarter, the state "recorded a growth of 11 per cent," he told the gathering of students.
Mr Naidu said his government is launching a scheme to financially help the jobless youth. "Now, we are launching unemployment allowance for youth. No state government is able to pay such an allowance. Recently a website has been launched; the programme will start from October 2," he said.
Earlier in the week, Mr Naidu criticized the central government for not giving Special Category Status to Andhra Pradesh as promised during the bifurcation in 2014.
He accused the BJP of "deliberately trying to weaken" his Telugu Desam Party and operating with a hidden agenda, by joining hands with the opposition YSR Congress, but people are "wise" and they understand the motives, he alleged.
The TDP last week reacted sharply to the warrants against Mr Naidu, issued by a court in Maharashtra, in a 10-year-old case and alleged that Prime Minister Modi was behind the conspiracy. TDP leader Buddha Venkanna said, the BJP is resorting to witch-hunting.
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