With Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu sitting on a day-long fast at Andhra Bhavan in New Delhi, protesting the Centre's apathy towards the state and is demanding Special Category Status for AP, several leaders from political parties which are part of the anti-BJP front have expressed their support to the Dharma Porata Deeksha.
Congress President Rahul Gandhi who visited Chandrababu at the Deeksha venue said that Prime Minister Modi has absolutely no credibility left, taking a jibe that "Chowkidaar Chor Hain (PM is a robber, robbing this country of its freedom and democracy)."
Former Prime Minister of India, Manmohan Singh, demanded Special Status for Andhra Pradesh from the venue of the fast. "I have stood by people of AP in the Parliament. This meeting is a testimony of our common resolve for special status demand. This issues got unanimous support from all parties. This should be implemented immediately without no further loss of time. I stand in solidarity with Chandrababu Naidu ji in his demand."
Mulayam Singh of Samajwadi Party, said: "I have a long relationship with Chandrababu Naidu ji. He has always respected me. UP has been able to influence India's elections significantly. Naidu ji's determination is worth mentioning. He always stays committed and we support him in his cause for Special Status for Andhra Pradesh. He has worked towards making India what it is today and his role in making of modern India is crucial. History will remember him for his great work. He cannot be considered just as any leader." He added that the Prime Minister is making fun of Naidu ji. "But, he should remember the years of work that Chandrababu has done. The people of AP are very lucky to have Naidu ji as their Chief Minister because he has never stopped working for his people. He has the capacity to change Indian politics and its direction. Samajwadi Party always supports you and Andhra Pradesh."
Derek O' Brien of the TMC said: "I bring you the greetings of Mamatha Banerjee ji. Modi has not spoken anything about assurances given to AP. He has made personal attacks on Chandrababu Naidu. He said that the nation wants only this 'Modi hatao, Desh bachao' and said that this is people's wish." He said that there is no Cooperative Federalism in India under Modi. "I congratulate Chandrababu Naidu and TDP for their fight against Modi and his government's high-handedness. In July 2018, TDP brought in a no-confidence motion in the Parliament and scared Modi. This is why they have been behaving like this with TDP and it has been questioning the BJP government. CBI has become BJP's only ally now, after several political parties have left the NDA. Modi-Shah are grandfathers of corruption."
Sharad Yadav, another long-standing leader and friend of Chandrababu Naidu said: "Chandrababu Naidu's efforts in creating the United Front government are worth mentioning. NDA government needs to remember that you are putting Indian Democracy in danger. All the efforts and sacrifices made by leaders and freedom fighters in creating Independent India are in danger because the cultural and democratic fabric of this country are under threat under the current BJP government. The Parliament witnessed every discussion over bifurcation of United AP. So, all the promises and assurances to Andhra Pradesh should be fulfilled. We totally support Chandrababu in his fast against the Centre. If you do not fulfil promises made to AP, then you will face severe consequences," he explained.
Meanwhile, other leaders such as Farooq Abdullah of National Conference, Aam Aadmi Party, Congress and several other political parties have come forward to express their solidarity with the TDP Chief.
Speaking from the Deeksha venue, Chandrababu said: "We need to respect everyone's opinions. Every leader has made an effort to come to the fast venue and are expressing solidarity with us." Several parties have supported us and are supporting us because they believe that we are demanding our rightful share, he said, adding that they have condemned Narendra Modi's discriminatory attitude towards non-BJP states and regional parties. He also thanked the leaders for making the effort in visiting him and expressing their support to the TDP and to the people of Andhra Pradesh.
This fast of the TDP Chief began at 8 am and will go on till 8 pm, after which he will submit a memorandum to President Ramnath Kovind tomorrow.