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Industrialists and trade bodies of the Telangana region today opposed special category status announced by the Centre to the residual state of Andhra Pradesh, while demanding a similar status to Telangana.
They said that the status which consists of a host of incentives and tax holidays to industries may have a cascading effect in the Telangana region since industries in the region will not be able to compete with those enjoying huge tax benefits in residual Andhra Pradesh.
"All tax incentives will form around 15 per cent of the sales revenue of a company. It is certain that nobody will come forward to set up units in Telangana if the neighbouring state offers incentives. Industries already in Telangana would also try to shift to Seemandhra due to the incentives," Hyderabad-based Pennar Group's Chairman J Nrupendra Rao said.
My Home Group chairman Rameshwar Rao said that entire South India along with Telangana would be adversely affected if the Centre would go ahead with special category status to the Seemandhra region.
Rao and other speakers spoke about the issue while addressing a seminar on industrial development in Telangana.
Telangana Industrialists' Federation (TIF) president K Sudheer Reddy said that they opposed special status to Seemandhra, because there has to be a level paying field for both regions.
"We are not against any financial package for the Seemandhra region, but there must be a level playing field," he said.
Reddy said that Telangana deserved 'special category status' since it has more backward districts as compared to the Seemandhra region.
The Seemandhra region does not meet any criteria that would qualify it for special status, he said.
Meanwhile, Telangana Joint Action Committee (JAC) chairman M Kodandaram reminded that the Centre had promised that both successor states would get equal incentives.
Union minister Jairam Ramesh had reportedly said that Seemandhra region would get nearly Rs 50,000 crore worth of benefits as a part of its special category status, during the next five years.