Black days begin in Andhra Pradesh

This is the black days season for the people of Andhra Pradesh with Chief Minister Chandrababu Naidu asking everyone to wear black badge as a mark of protest against the Central government. He had attended the Assembly and secretariat wearing black badge. His MLAs and MLCs have followed him. This black badge protest will continue till April 6. The Chief Minister had also asked the employees to wear black badge and attend to their duties. He had given a call to the people to follow suit.

Though he is visiting the national capital for two days from April 2, to mobilise national level support to his fight against the BJP-led Central government, it is not clear yet whether he would continue his black badge protest in Delhi or restrict it to Amaravati.

Chandrababu Naidu is now visualising a State wide movement on the lines of the Samaikyandhra movement held at the time of bifurcation. That movement in 2013 was backed by then the Chief Minister Kiran Kumar Reddy and led by NGO leader P Ashok Babu. That movement went to every corner of the State in the 13 districts with Ashok Babu being the face of the Seemandhra people. Now, while Chandababu Naidu wants to do both the roles, Ashok Babu and his former companion Pabbaraju Venkateswarlu, are not ready to repeat the same. The APSRTC Unions which played key role in the Samaikyandhra movement are not ready to back either Ashok Babu or Pabbaraju this time, despite Chandrababu Naidu trying to take lead.

The Samaikyandhra movement was sentimental and it was voluntary mostly. Now, though there is a strong feeling of injustice done by the denial of the special category status, there is politics involved in it for which people are not ready to volunteer for TDP or Chandrababu Naidu.

Coming back to the black badges protest, one wonders why Chandrababu Naidu had left his party MPs from demonstrating in the same way with black badges in the Parliament. What is preventing him from asking his MPs to hold black badges protest along with him in the Parliament where the protest would be visible to the Prime Minister.

Besides this protest, Chandrababu Naidu is also planning for another round of all-party meeting in the second week of April. This time, he is planning to send his Ministers to Jana Sena, YSR Congress and the BJP to invite them as the three parties did not attend the first meeting. It is to be seen whether the three parties would accept his invitation or continue to stay away from his action plan.

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