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Andhra Pradesh special status row: Amit Shah’s convoy attacked in Tirupati, TDP men pelt stones

As the high-voltage election campaign for Karnataka Assembly election 2018 drew to a close, BJP president experienced the heat of the Special Category status demand issue for neighbouring state Andhra Pradesh. Shah, who was proceeding to Renigunta airport from Tirumala hills faced a TDP (Telugu Desam Party) protest in Alipiri today as a stone was allegedly hurled at one of the vehicles in his convoy. Shouting slogans, Telugu Desam Party activists demanded that the Centre immediately fulfil all promises made to Andhra Pradesh in the Reorganisation Act, 2014, and also accord special category status for the state. Deputy Chief Minister (Home) N China Rajappa said that some unidentified miscreants hurled a stone that hit one of the vehicles in Shahs convoy. He, however, clarified that no stone hit Shahs vehicle but another one behind Shahs car. We dont know yet if some miscreants posing as TDP workers resorted to this act, he added. Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu criticised the workers and warned them that such acts of indiscipline would not to be tolerated. A TDP statement, quoting the chief minister, said he asked the party leaders to ensure that such incidents do not recur. In the statement, Naidu asked the workers not to bring any disrepute to the party by such acts of indiscipline. Everybody should act in a disciplined manner. There is no place for clashes or tensions in our just struggle, Naidu said. Shah offered prayers at the Lord Venkateswara shrine in Tirumala this morning. The BJP president had arrived in Tirupati last night after wrapping up his over a month-long election campaign in Karnataka. The alleged stone-throwing incident occured when Shah was returning from Tirumala. The TDP had snapped its ties with the BJP alleging neglect of the southern state and failure of the Centre to grant special category state status for Andhra Pradesh. It has alleged that the Centre failed to fulfil its commitments toward Andhra Pradesh, after the state was bifurcated in 2014. Asserting that special category status (SCS) was the right of Andhra Pradesh, Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu in April said Prime Minister Narendra Modi had gone back on his assurance made at an election meeting in 2014 to grant the same. Addressing a huge rally of ruling TDP, he said Modi as then BJP Prime Ministerial candidate had publicly made promises, including granting of SCS, at the meeting four years ago.