BJP Rajya Sabha member YS Chowdary lashed out at the YSRCP government in Andhra Pradesh on Sunday and said that the Centre would not 'sit quietly' over Chief Minister Jagan Mohan Reddy's proposal to shift the executive capital from Amaravati to Visakhapatnam.
YS Chowdary, who is also known as Sujana Chowdary, toured Amaravati on Sunday and spoke to several farmers who have been protesting against the proposed move for over a week.
Addressing the reporters in Vijayawada in the evening, Chowdary said, “The Centre will not sit quietly. I have discussed it with the Centre. We know what rights the Centre has and we will show that when it is necessary.”
He also added, “We know when to use our powers. There is a need for people from all 13 districts to protest against this move.”
An expert committee headed by GN Rao, which was constituted by the YSRCP government to decide the state capital, had filed its final report earlier this month. In the report, it recommended three capitals for the state — a legislative one in Amaravati, an executive one in Visakhapatnam and a judicial capital in Kurnool.
The proposal has sparked off protests across Amaravati as many farmers who had given up their land in the promise of getting developed plots in the capital, felt cheated.
On Sunday, Chowdary termed the recommendations of the GN Rao committee as 'incomprehensible' and pointed out that the state government would now have to pay a compensation of several thousand crores to the farmers who had given up their lands, and a similar amount of money to the contractors who had taken a bank loan and began works in Amaravati.
“Can the government afford to shell out such a huge amount?" Chowdary asked.
Chowdary was a key leader of the Telugu Desam Party (TDP) and a close aide of former CM Chandrababu Naidu when Amaravati was conceived. However, he later defected to the BJP.
However, the YSRCP government seems bent on going ahead with its plan. A committee report by the Boston Consulting Group (BCG) is due to be submitted in the first week of January. The state cabinet has decided to form a high-level committee to go through the GN Rao and BCG reports, and take a final decision.