Jaitley rules out special status for Andhra, offers special package

With TD party made it clear that it is going to break its alliance with BJP if the demands of the state were not met, the centre has come into defence mode.

On Wednesday Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has clarified that the centre is committed to the promises made and that it stands in giving the state financial assistance equivalent to a special category state.

Finance Minister made it clear that the centre is going to fulfil all the demands and the only variation is that, instead of calling it an SCS it would be referred to a special package.

The finance minister added that the provisions for revenue deficit in Andhra Pradesh as per the Finance Commission had already been implemented while acknowledging that the state had suffered due to a bifurcation in 2014.

“Andhra Pradesh was unwilling and Telangana wanted the division. Andhra was suffering in terms of resources. One of the promises was that Andhra Pradesh should be given special status. Provision for revenue deficit in case of Andhra Pradesh as per Finance Commission has been already made,” Jaitley said.

In a dig at the Andhra CM, Jaitley asserted that sentiment does not decide the quantum of funds and claimed the Centre had repeatedly said it was ready to give it. He said when the state was bifurcated; the concept of special category status did not exist.

“According to 14th Finance Commission, there is no special category status now to be given. Special category status means that you get a 90-10 advantage, not 60-40,” the Union Minister said.

So we have to wait and see what the special package awaits and what the state government thinks of it.

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