The Congress on Wednesday accused the BJP government of trampling "constitutionalism" by disregarding the promise of former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to provide special status category to Andhra Pradesh and said it was akin to betraying the nine core people of the state.
"Trampling upon constitutionalism and backstabbing the trust of the people have become synonymous with the BJP. The new BJP government has broken its first promise by bluntly refusing to grant special category status to Andhra Pradesh and disrespecting the provisions of Andhra Pradesh Reorganization Act, 2014," Congress media in-charge Randeep Singh Surjewala said in a statement.
He said Finance Minister Nirmarla Sitharaman, who hails from Andhra Pradesh, has said in Parliament that "there was no proposal under consideration of the Central government to grant Special Category Status (SCS) to any state".
Surjewala said: "it is a shameful betrayal of nine crore people of Andhra Pradesh".
Surjewala said that Congress President Rahul Gandhi has repeatedly raised the issue of denying the Special Category Status to Andhra Pradesh and fulfilling the financial commitment to Andhra Pradesh and Telangana. "We hope the new government of YSR Congress will take up this important issue with BJP," he said.
Surjewala said that on February 20, 2014, when the Andhra Pradesh Reorganization Bill, 2014 was being discussed, the then Prime Minister Manmohan Singh had made a solemn commitment on the floor of Parliament as Prime Minister of India that for the purposes of Central assistance, special category status will be extended to the successor state of Andhra Pradesh.
"This commitment of special category status to newly carved out state of Andhra Pradesh had been discussed with Arun Jaitley, the then Leader of the Opposition and other senior BJP leaders and they had agreed on the same," he said.