Snap Ties With TDP if Required: BJP AP Unit to Central Leadership

The Andhra Pradesh unit of the BJP has suggested to its central leadership to break ties with the Telugu Desam Party before the latter does it, but felt the TDP was "not in a position" to walk out of the alliance now, a state minister said on Monday, 19 February.

The state BJP also suggested that a public meeting be held in which Finance Minister Arun Jaitley would place "all facts" before the people about what the Centre did for the state in the last four years, he said.

"These were the two options we gave to our central leadership. The BJP loses nothing if it breaks the alliance with the TDP. The bond should be broken, if required, before the TDP does it." - P Manikyala Rao, State Endowments Minister

He, however, felt that the TDP was "not in a position" to sever ties with the BJP now.

The BJP and the TDP that share power both at the Centre and in the state have been at loggerheads ever since the Union Budget was presented on 1 February. The TDP, which is unhappy over the allocation of funds to the state, had attacked the Centre for doing "injustice" to AP.

The minister said efforts were on to hold the public meeting with Jaitley, possibly in Vijayawada, to explain the quantum of financial assistance the Centre has granted to the state.

Rao, who is one of the two BJP ministers in the Chandrababu Naidu Cabinet, said they were ready to quit their posts if their central leadership directed them to do so.

"We are trying to do this before the state Budget session starts on 5 March, the day when Parliament Budget Session, too, resumes. We have smartphones in hand and it will take only a couple of minutes to e-mail our resignation letters." - State Endowments Minister P Manikyala Rao

“Our allies in some states have left us. If one goes, another one is ready to join us," the minister said.

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