Scores of farmers in Andhra Pradesh’s Amaravati staged a protest at Delhi’s Jantar Mantar against the state government’s plan to introduce a bill to develop three capitals instead of one, and MPs from various parties joined in to extend their support.
Carrying placards and ploughs, the protesters also demanded that the YSR Congress Party government in the state stick to its first plan to make Amaravati a capital as envisioned by former minister and Telugu Desam Party (TDP) president N Chandrababu Naidu in 2014.
TDP leaders including Jayadev Galla and K Rammohan Naidu, Denmark Ali of the Bahujan Samaj Party and K Raghu Rama Krishna Raju of the YSR Congress, a dissident leader of the state ruling party, were among the MPs who expressed support for the farmers protesting under the banner. of ‘Amaravati Parirakshana Samithi’.
Several other leaders, including those from the Congress and the Left, such as CPI secretary D Raja and local Rajya Sabha member Santhosh Kumar, joined the demonstration at Jantar Mantar, according to a Samithi statement.
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“The farmers want the government to fulfill its earlier commitment. Instead of developing the capital city of Amaravati, they have taken land, but now the government is going backwards,” said Raju.
Amaravati Parirakshana Samithi president Shiva Reddy said that the YSR Congress after coming to power in 2019 reversed the previous TDP government’s decision to develop Amaravati as the only state capital and decided to build two more capitals in Visakhapatnam and Kurnool.
This has caused major protests by the farmers of Amaravati, who “have given 33,000 hectares of land to the capital”, he said, adding that they now feel betrayed.
Farmers had also organized a maha padayatra from Amaravati to Tirupati last year to garner public support for their demands, Reddy said. For the past three years, farmers have been protesting against the state government’s decision to establish three capitals, the president of the organization said.