Naidu’s daylong fast becomes centre-stage for show of opposition unity

NEW DELHI: Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu’s daylong fast demanding special status for his state on Monday became a rallying point for the opposition, which got together for the second time in less than a month to present a united front against the Government.

Bringing state issues on a central stage, a series of opposition leaders made a beeline for Andhra Bhavan, where Naidu staged his protest.

Those who met Naidu included former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Congress president Rahul Gandhi, National Conference chairperson Farooq Abdullah, NCP’s Majeed Memon, Trinamool Congress’ Derek O’ Brien, DMK’s Tiruchi Siva, Loktantrik Janata Dal’s Sharad Yadav, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and Samajwadi Party founder Mulayam Singh Yadav.

The last time the parties came together the same way was on January 19, when 22 opposition parties supported West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee in her agitation against the CBI’s alleged misconduct.

The TDP president is demanding that the Centre fulfill promises made during Andhra Pradesh’s bifurcation in 2014 and alleges that Modi was not following ‘raj dharma’ by denying the state special status. (AGENCIES)