Kapu leader calls off fast after talks with government

Visakhapatnam, Feb 8 (IANS) Kapu leader Mudragada Padmanabham and his wife on Monday called off their indefinite fast over the demand for reservation for the community, following successful talks with the Andhra Pradesh government.

With the Telugu Desam Party government assuring the couple that it was committed to do justice to the Kapus, they ended their fast, which had entered the fourth day on Monday.

The former minister and his wife Padmavati were fasting at their house at Kirlampudi in East Godavari district since Friday.

The breakthrough came after state Labour Minister Atchan Naidu, TDP’s Andhra Pradesh unit president Kala Venkat Rao and other leaders held talks with Mudragada.

Atchan Naidu told reporters that the government was working sincerely to find a solution to the problems of Kapus.

He said the government was working to fulfil the promise to include Kapus in the list of backward classes to provide them reservation.

He said a Kapu commission had been constituted to help the poor and economically backward among the community.

He assured the Kapu leader that the government will release funds for the commission.

The minister said the government would ensure that no injustice is done to the backward castes while providing quota to the Kapus.

Mudragada said he undertook the fast to seek justice for the community and to make the government fulfil its promises. He hoped that the government will implement the assurances given to him.

According to him, the government has promised to immediately release Rs.500 crore to the Kapu commission and allocate Rs.1,000 crore every year from the next financial year.

He also demanded that the government withdraw cases against innocent people in connection with the violence that occurred at Tuni on January 31.

Atchan Naidu promised that no action will be taken against the innocents.

Earlier, former union minister K. Chiranjeevi and Congress party’s state president Raghuveera Reddy were arrested at Rajahmundry airport soon after they landed and were preparing to leave for Kirlampudi to meet Mudragada. The arrests led to a strong protest by Congress workers.

Police also stopped another former minister, Dasari Narayan Rao in Rajahmundry from leaving for Kirlampudi to meet the fasting Kapu leader.

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