Mudragada to start Padayatra on January 25

  • Kapus refuse to seek police permission for marathon

 Dara Gopi

Amaravati: The much-talked about the marathon walk of Kapu leader and former minister Mudragada Padmanabham is all set to take off on January 25 as decided earlier. Though, initially, it was to take place in November, the Kapu Joint Action Committee had to defer it for various reasons, including refusal of the police to grant permission. This time, the Kapu JAC and the former minister are determined to go ahead with their scheduled programme.

The walk – Padayatra – would start at Ravulapalem and conclude at Antarvedi seeking BC status for the Kapus as promised by Chief Minister Chandrababu Naidu during the 2014 elections. The JAC turned down the AP police asvice to seek permission for the yatra.

The JAC leader V Yesudas refused to seek permission as the padayatra is going to be organised peacefully on Gandhian path. They recalled that even Chandrababu Naidu did not seek police permission for his padayatra before the 2014 elections. Same is the case with late Dr Y S Rajasekhar Reddy’s padayatra, followed by that of Y S Jaganmohan Reddy and his sister Sharmila before the 2014 elections, he recalled. He further sought to remind the police of the Odarpu Yatras of Jaganmohan Reddy where the organisers have never sought the police permission and wondered why only Kapus should seek permission.

Mudragada, who has been spearheading the movement, reiterates that he would go ahead with the programme without seeking any permission from the police. He asserted that they were not asking for anything from the sky. “He (Chandrababu Naidu) had promised BC status for Kapus before the elections. Now in power, how can he remain silent or delay its implementation now? We are only trying to remind him of his poll promise which does not require any permission. Even Mahatma Gandhi did not seek police permission for his Satyagraha Yatras,” the former minister asserted.

Meanwhile, the BC organisations are opposing the inclusion of Kapus in the BC list as that would take away a greater share of their reservations. The BJ JAC leader Ch Venugopal opposed the proposal as the dominant-Kapus would grab major share of the BC reservations at the cost of the backward, low-profile BCs. He said he was prepared to organise an open debate on the issue and wanted Mudragada to address them and clear their doubts over the issue.

Though the government had been promising that the inclusion of BCs would not deprive the BCs of their reservation status and the government would extend additional quota for the Kapus, there is an apprehension among the BCs that they are set to lose their share if the BC quota is opened for the Kapus.

The Kapus have been part of the ruling class in the State, much advanced both socially and economically, with negligible exceptions, while a greater lot of the castes in the existing BC list are backward both socially and economically. There are several castes in the BC list that have no access to education, health and politics. Several castes have not made it to Assembly even after 70 years of Independence while Kapus have been enjoying greater share in State politics.

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