Hyderabad: Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Chandrababu Naidu on Monday accused Centre of diverting the tax revenues collected from southern states to the development of northern states.
He also demanded to know from the Centre why a state divided on the basis of sentiment can’t be given special category status based on the same sentiment.
"There is nothing called Centre's or state’s money. It’s the taxpayers’ money. The southern states contribute maximum tax revenues to the Centre. But they are diverting the money to the development of northern state," said Chandrababu Naidu.
The statement, made amid the strain in ties and with an eye on the upcoming polls, echoes what his counterpart in Karnataka, Siddaramiah, has said previously.
Known for pitching sub-nationalism against the BJP government’s nationalistic tendencies, the Karnataka CM had also accused the Centre of not doing enough for the states that contribute more tax revenue.
The comments came after a TDP delegation was left disappointed when the Home Ministry declined its demand for a Railway Zone in Vishakhapatnam.
Hitting out at BJP for changing its stand and doing injustice to Andhra Pradesh, Naidu said, “It is unfortunate that central minister says special category status cannot be given on basis of sentiment. But if state can be divided on the basis of sentiment, why can’t special category status be given based on the same sentiment?"
"I will work hard, day and night, and with my experience, I will rebuild the state", Naidu promised.
Chandrababu Naidu has directed MPs to explain to everyone about the state of affairs in the Parliament and continue the fight till demands are fulfilled and justice is delivered.
Earlier, Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrashekhar Rao had also raised similar concerns.
Hitting out at BJP president Amit Shah during his visit to state last year, KCR termed claims of Centre granting additional funds for the state a "blatant lie".
"Centre earned Rs 50,013 crore in taxes from Telangana during 2016-17, while it gave only Rs 24,561 crore under all schemes. Amit Shah should know that it is Telangana which gave Rs 25, 452 crore to the Centre."