An independent body of Special Category Status Sadhana Samithi is planning for a fresh round of agitation involving youth, students, teachers and mass organisations this time. This would start from June 15 and would continue in different forms involving cross sections of the people.
The Samithi had been active with Chalasani Srinivas leading it and actor Sivaji backing it and sometimes joining the agitation for the past four years. The Samithi had also organised a State-level bus yatra in the past and two rounds of State wide bandh. Interestingly, the Samithi has the strong support of the two Left parties, the CPI and the CPM. In the last four years, they held series of protests for special category status.
When they called for the State bandh, the Congress and the YSR Congress too have supported them and the bundh on two occasions was successful. However, the Samiti slipped into the Chief Minster Chandrababu Naidu’s pocket when the TDP chief pulled out from the NDA and raised the voice for the Special Category Status. When Chandrababu Naidu called for an all-party meeting, the two Left parties and the Samithi leaders joined him. Ironically, the Congress too tried to be part of Chandrababu Naidu’s action plan against the BJP, while the YSR Congress stayed back.
There was hue and cry across the State with the Left parties, the Samithi and the Congress trying to be part of the Chandrababu Naidu’s game plan. People across the State raised their opposition to these parties joining hands with Chandrababu Naidu, who had given up the Special Category Status, spoke against it and had even used police force to suppress the voice. There were cases against the CPI, CPM and Samithi leaders for joining agitations for the special category status and they were not withdrawn when Chandrababu Naidu too took up the issue. It was for this reason people criticised these parties and Samithi for attending the all-party meet convened by Chandrababu Naidu.
Forced to be out of Naidu’s game plan, the Samithi and the Left parties have decided to organise protests involving students, youth and teachers. They would be visiting the schools, colleges and universities across the State from June 15 to sensitise these sections to join the movement. The Samilhi also plans to organise national highways blockade for 48 hours bringing the national highway traffic to a grinding halt.
It is now to be seen if the TDP would back this struggle or would go ahead with its own action plan claiming to be champion of the special category status demand.