Kurnool, (Andhra Pradesh) Oct 18 : Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Tuesday backed the demand of Amaravati farmers that Amaravati should be developed as the only state capital of Andhra Pradesh.
A delegation of leaders of the Amaravati Joint Action Committee (JAC) called on Gandhi during his ‘Bharat Jodo Yatra’ in Aluru in Kurnool district, and explained to him the problems faced by farmers and other sections of people after the YSR Congress Party (YSRCP) decided to develop three state capitals.
The JAC sought the support of Congress for their demand to develop Amaravati as the only state capital, and Gandhi said his party fully backs the farmers’ demand. He also assured them that the party would provide legal assistance to them.
JAC leaders along with farmers displaced by Polavaram project and local farmers met Gandhi at his camp.
Later addressing a corner meeting at Minikurthi village, Gandhi said the Congress would stand by the farmers of Amaravati. He said the farmers surrendered their lands for development of state capital in the hope of a better future but they were betrayed with the decision to have three state capitals.
The Congress leader also called for addressing the problems of onion farmers. He reiterated that if voted to power at the Centre, the Congress would accord special category status to Andhra Pradesh as promised in 2014.
Gandhi said that the BJP had gone back on the commitment made in Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Act. He also slammed the saffron party for what he called dividing the country. He said the Congress was fighting against the divisive politics of BJP.
The ‘Bharat Jodo Yatra’ entered Andhra Pradesh on Tuesday morning from neighbouring Karnataka.
State Congress chief S. Sailajanath, Working President N. Thulasi Reddy, Yatra coordinator for Telugu states and MP Uttam Kumar Reddy, senior leaders M.M. Pallam Raju, K.V.P. Ramachandra Rao, N. Raghuveera Reddy and other leaders participated in the Yatra with Rahul Gandhi.
Amid tight security, the Congress MP along with other leaders and hundreds of supporters began the foot march from Halaharvi Ramamandir in Aluru constituency. The Yatra took an afternoon break at Aluru.
Gandhi will have a night halt at Chagi village near Adoni.
The yatra will continue in Andhra Pradesh till October 21 covering about 100 km in four Assembly segments in Kurnool district.