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The Andhra Pradesh Assembly today passed a resolution thanking the Central Government for approving a special economic package for the state. There was, however, acrimony between the ruling Telugu Desam and the lone opposition YSR Congress on the issue with the latter castigating the former for failing to secure special category status (SCS) for the state. Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu, though, said every benefit that would have come under SCS would accrue through the special economic package. Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley announced the package in September last and since then the state government had been demanding the Centre accord "legal sanctity" to it. With the Union Cabinet finally approving the package last evening, an elated Chief Minister tabled the resolution in the Assembly expressing gratitude to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Jaitley, Union Ministers M Venkaiah Naidu, P Ashok Gajapati Raju and Nirmala Sitharaman, among others. "This will be the harbinger of development of our new state that suffered heavily due to the irrational bifurcation," Chandrababu said. He went on to speak elaborately on the Polavaram multi -purpose irrigation project for which the Centre agreed to bear 100 per cent of the cost. "There is a conspiracy to see that the project doesn't progress. We will thwart all such efforts and complete the project in time." A remark by the opposition members when the CM was reading out the statement caused commotion in the House. Legislative Affairs Minister Yanamala Ramakrishnudu said the word used by the opposition was "unparliamentary" and accordingly Speaker Kodela Sivaprasada Rao said it would be expunged from the record. After a heated debate in which Leader of Opposition Y S Jaganmohan Reddy accused the government of hoodwinking the people on the special category status issue, the House passed the resolution expressing gratitude to the Centre. The House was then adjourned till Monday. Earlier in the day, the YSRC forced adjournment of the proceedings twice for ten minutes each on the Polavaram project and weavers' problems during Question Hour. Opposition members rushed into the Well of the House and disrupted the proceedings, not satisfied with the government's response. Meanwhile, the Committee on Privileges tabled a report on its inquiry into a complaint against YSRC MLA R K Roja.
The panel recommended suspension of Roja from the House for one year over her remarks against TDP MLA Vangalapudi Anita. The committee left the final decision to the House. The issue could not be taken up today since Roja was not present in the Assembly.
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