President & Group Managing Director: Dr.Shelly Ahmed | Editor in Chief & CEO: M H Ahssan
Showing posts sorted by relevance for query Telangana. Sort by date Show all posts
Showing posts sorted by relevance for query Telangana. Sort by date Show all posts

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

When 'Telangana' Separated With Andhra Pradesh State?

By M H Ahssan | INNLIVE

ANALYSIS Fifty-eight years after the unification of Telangana and Andhra region, the Lok Sabha separated them by dividing the state of Andhra Pradesh. After blacking out the live coverage of the Telangana debate on Lok Sabha TV, the Hower House voted for Telangana state in a controversial voice vote. Interestingly, both Congress and BJP joined hands to divide Andhra Pradesh. Only the TMC and JDU staged a walkout calling it a murder of democracy.

According to experts the Congress which is staring at a rout in most parts of the country is likely to win big in Telangana which has 17 Lok Sabha and 119 Assembly seats. The Congress is expected to be decimated in Seemandhra region.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

An OPEN LETTER To Sri Manmohan Singh, Honorable Prime Minister of India

Dear Sir,

We take this opportunity to impress upon you the need and urgency of your action in the form of working toward a separate Telangana State. As you quoted Victor Hugo over a decade ago, “No army can withstand the strength of an idea whose time has come” and the Telangana people’s aspiration is one such.

Telangana has been subjected to oppression and neglect for over five hundred fifty years. First five hundred years, Muslim Kings made the decisions for Telangana, and the last 47 years, Andhras are making decisions for Telangana. The Telangana people were free for only four years (1952 – 1956) to make their own decisions. Freedom to determine one’s own destiny, as you know is the highest of the rewards for a true democracy.

Four and a half decades have passed since the State of Andhra Pradesh was formed. As you are aware, the merger of Telangana with the former Andhra State became possible only because a set of solemn promises were made and constitutional guarantees were given to protect against the possible neglect and exploitation of Telangana. These promises were made not just once, but numerous times and all were broken.

Consequently, the exploitation of the region and its people is continued. The people of the region are not only deprived of their legitimate share in the development but are also marginalized in the political process. They have been humiliated on the cultural and linguistic fronts and are virtually reduced to the status of second-class citizens in their own homeland. A prolonged neglect of the region has provided a fertile ground for the emergence and spread of Naxalite violence and also unending farmer suicides.

The development scenario of Telangana is very depressing. There is not even a single sector in which this region has not been ignored. We would, however, like to bring to your notice only a few areas to underscore the gravity of the situation.

EDUCATION

The literacy rate in Telangana is 37% as against 46% in Coastal Andhra, 45% in Rayalaseema and 72% in the Capital City.
Enrollment of students at the school level in Telangana is 30% instead of 40%, based on the size of population. Over 75% of the expenditure on government and government-aided colleges is incurred in the other two regions.
Out of 21 Universities and University level Institutions funded either by the State or the Central Government, 3 are located in Coastal Andhra, 7 in Rayalaseema, 10 in the Capital city and just one in the entire Telangana region.
IRRIGATION

69% percent of catchments area of river Krishna and 79% percent of catchments area of river Godavari are in the Telangana, and Telangana region gets less than 15% of the river waters.
The Coastal Andhra has usurped 80% of assured waters of Krishna allocated to the State by the Bachawat Tribunal. 90% of surplus waters, yet to be allocated, are reserved for the Rayalaseema, denying the Telangana its rightful share.
The Godavari waters have already been harnessed to irrigate more than 12 lakh acres in Coastal Andhra while the corresponding figure for Telangana is 4 lakh acres. The proposed Polavaram Project on Godavari is to serve the Coastal Andhra region is planned to be six times larger than the proposed Ichampalli Project to serve the backward Telangana region.
The net area under tank irrigation in the Telangana region had declined by 76% between 1956 and 1998. The Telangana farmers mostly depend on well irrigation. The farmers of Coastal Andhra get cheap canal water subsidized by the State, while the Telangana farmers are forced to pay higher electric pump bills.
AGRICULTURE

The net cultivated area in the Telangana region has decreased by 22% during the period 1956 and 1998, while it has increased by 4.25% in Coastal Andhra region.
40% of the cultivated area in the State is in the Telangana region, and the institutional credit available to the Telangana farmers is far less. They get 18%, 23% and 28% of the total credit provided by the District Cooperative Central Banks (short-term), the A.P. Cooperative Central Bank (long-term) and the Scheduled Commercial Banks.
Inadequate Institutional credit is forcing the Telangana farmers to fall into the debt trap laid by the private moneylenders, leading to an unprecedented number of suicides during the last five years.
INDUSTRIES

No major industry worth its name has been setup in any of the districts of the Telangana region as compared to the establishment of several industries in Visakapatnam, Vijayawada, Kakinada, Nellore, Tirupati, and Cuddapah.
Quite a few major industries established in the Telangana region during the rule of Nizams are being closed one after the other by the successive governments. Important among the closed industries are Azamjahi Mills (Warangal), Sir Silk Factory (Sirpur), Antargaon Spinning Mills (Adilabad), DBR Mills, and Allwyn Factory. Further the famous Nizam Sugar Factory (Nizamabad) is on the verge of closure.
EMPLOYEMENT

There are about 15 lakh jobs in the government and government-funded offices and establishments. Based on the size of population, 40% of these jobs, i.e. 6 lakhs, should have been filled in by the Telangana job seekers. But the total number of jobs now occupied by them is less than 2 lakhs.
The State Government issued orders as back as in the year 1984 to remove all the non-locals appointed and to appoint only Telangana locals against the vacancies created. Besides not implementing these orders, further recruitment of non-locals in the Telangana region is going on.
FINANCES

The contribution of Telangana region to the State’s Exchequer has all along been around 43%. But the expenditure incurred on the development of this region has never been more than 25%.
The lower per capita income of the Telangana region enabled the State Government to get higher allocation of funds from the successive Finance Commissions. But the benefit of such higher allocation of funds never materialized for the Telangana region.
More than 80% of loans taken from the World Bank and other International and National agencies are being spent for the development of Coastal Andhra and Rayalaseema. But the burden of repayment of these loans and interest on them is being borne by the people of Telangana to the extent of 40 to 43%.
A cumulative effect of these and similar factors, over the years, has been the diversion of thousands of crores of rupees meant for the development of Telangana region, for the development of other regions.
The situation in other sectors is equally, if not more, alarming. The Drinking water is a major issue for the Telangana region. The people mostly depend on bore-wells for their drinking water and are inflicted with fluorosis. The fluorides in the drinking water cause permanent disfigurement, brain damage and there is no cure for it.

Telangana is rich with resources. Telangana people are asking: Use Telangana resources for the development of Telangana region for the betterment of Telangana people. We hope that the national government under your stewardship is aware of these facts.

Formation of Telangana State is as explained earlier is the aspiration of the natives. That aside, the principles governing smaller states to bring government closer to people would build up the economy and empower people in the process. Telangana people opposed the formation of Andhra Pradesh state in 1956, they overwhelmingly voted for a separate Telangana state in 1969. In 2004 elections, the people of Andhra Pradesh accepted the concept of two states, voted overwhelmingly for TRS-Congress alliance, and rejected the TDP appeal for united Andhra Pradesh.

I congratulates you for taking the step toward initiating a dialogue through President’s address to the Parliament and further clarifying it in your first Press conference the future Telangana state. Telangana people have committed to achieve their statehood through non-violence. The conditions are ripe and there is consensus on ground with out any unnecessary hate or dislike toward each other. The time for Telangana has come and please understands that I will continue to work towards the betterment of the region.

Thanking you Sir.
Sincerely yours,

Telangana Supercop

Political Sabotage In Telangana!

There are several instances in the history of political movements in India and elsewhere that show how the question of leadership assumes very significance. Although movements are supposed to throw leaders and elevate them during the course of movements, the other way round is also possible in the case of some popular movements in the country. Take the case of Jai Telangana movement of late 1960s. In this instance, political leaders led the movement to its nadir, but failed to sustain it thereafter, and thus worth noting. The movement attracted the national headlines and thereby secured the popular support in the elections held in 1971. Like the JP Movement of mid 70s, the Jai Telangana movement was a popular youth movement. Incidentally, it was Indira Gandhi who faced the challenges of both these movements, and failed to manipulate them electorally. Failed to respond to such political upheavals in a democratic manner, she had to resort to anti-democratic and coercive means, only to betray the spirit of those movements. Of course, the leaders and followers of these movements tried to shirk their responsibilities for their acts of collusion with Indira Gandhi, overtly or covertly. They proved to be the sabotagers of such historic movements.

In the case of Jai Telangana movement, once Congress Union Steel Minister, Marri Chenna Reddy hijacked the Telangana Praja Samiti (TPS) movement of students and employees of Telangana region of Andhra Pradesh and led it to its successful end. Chenna Reddy replaced its first president A.Madanmohan so as to politicalise the movement. Accordingly, this movement-turned party, that secured the popular mandate in terms of winning 11 Loksabha seats (out of 14 seats), swimming across all the currents against the entrenched Congress and the Communists, from the region. Failed to take on the Durga-Indira Gandhi, the Chenna reddy leadership had to yield to the pressures and favours of the Prime Minister. Thus he had to surrender all the TPS’s MPs to Indira Gandhi for few crumbs and thereby sabotaged the movement once for all. However, there was not much noise raised against the act of betrayal, from any quarter including the followers of the TPS. What is discernible from this instance is that the leadership is like a double-edged sword, which can ensure success of a movement, or else it can water down the movements as and when they choose to do so. Thus, the leadership is very crucial in any democratic movement. Although the Telangana movement has always been a democratic one, as the popular mandate was recorded on couple of occasions, the leadership played a dubious role. Unless the leaders are exemplary, one cannot expect them to perform better.

Was the ‘gentlemen agreement’ not an historical blunder? It is pertinent to recollect the violation of this agreement by the first ever chief minister of Andhra Pradesh, Neelam Sanjeeva reddy ridiculing the post of Deputy Chief ministership as sixth finger and thus useless! While he served as Deputy Chief Minister in the B.Gopal reddy’s regime till October 31, 1956, the post became ridiculous to him by November 1, 1956! It was one of the six-point formulas that were violated on the very first day of formation of Andhra Pradesh. Leave alone its sanctity and popular support, the six-point alone was the basis for state formation. There was no referendum of our people, nor was there any recommendation of the SRC (which recommended against merger of Telangana with Andhra state, indeed!) to that effect. Even the Hyderabad State Assembly was divided on the hasty decision. Surprisingly, Prime Minister Nehru’s views on the need of continuation of Telangana reflect the feeling of the then Central government.

Then what precipitated the illegal action of hasty merger was the imposition of Andhra Congress leaders’ viewpoint in the form of ‘Gentlemen agreement’, an historical blunder that was never respected either in letter or in spirit. Who were these gentlemen? Which party they belonged to, by and large? It is those congress leaders who were under the control of Congress coterie that played a dubious role so as to bulldoze the Telangana leaders. Since the Congress party members largely represented the ‘gentlemen agreement’, then that party alone has to own the responsibility. Incidentally, the formation of the state was contractual and conditional (as it was subject to six-point formula/gentlemen agreement), and its very violation on the very first day can be understood as negating the state formation itself! How can the contract be continued if one of its conditions were violated? Does it not tantamount to one-sided contract? It is regrettable to note that such one-sided contract has been imposed on Telangana for that past five decades, thanks to its leaders’ stony silence.

Can minority ever outwit the majority? In the Andhra Pradesh Legislative House of 294 members, only 107 members hail from the Telangana region, which can never have any veto power against the 187 members from non-Telangana areas. Obviously, in the case of any democratic institution, it is the view of the majority that always outwits the minority, not vice versa. Since, there is hardly any protection for a minority viewpoint in the Westminster model (British) of democracy, the minority is bound to bear the brunt of the majority rule. Thus, the rule of majority, that is of non-Telangana areas in Telangana region, for it is merged with Andhra state in 1956, continues unabated. Even if the Chief Minister belongs to the majority party, which obviously has to command majority in non-Telangana areas, he cannot be expected to do develop, leave alone favour, the region the way his people expect him to do so.

For instance, the fate of G.O. No. 610 (that exposes how non-local candidates were appointed against the local quota some 25 years ago) is still hanging in the air. Apparently, almost all political parties favour, in principle, implementing the G.O. No. 610, but did nothing as far as its practicality is concerned. Thus, one can imagine its fate, as its implementation is left to those biased bureaucrats who were actually responsible for the act of illegal recruitment. How come some bureaucrats act so arrogantly that even Girglani had to complain about non-cooperation of government officials in identifying, leave alone punishing, those illegal employees who were appointed long long ago? How come they fail to comply with the norms of government-appointed Girglani commission for more than two years? Where do they get strength from, or tacit cooperation of? How can the government permit such erring officials to continue in office? It is not easy to answer to these questions. For, it is the government that is dominated by the majority in the Assembly of Andhra Pradesh that is responsible for the behaviour of the officials, be it their action of appointing non-locals or inaction of covering up their misdeeds for so long.

Whether the Telangana CMs failed to ‘develop’ the region? Thus, the arguments of ‘development by Telangana chief ministers’ (P.V.Narsimha Rao, M.Chenna Reddy, T.Anjaiah) can be dismissed as mischievous. It may be noted that Jalagam Vengal Rao who cannot be considered as Telangana leader (as he migrated from Krishna district), and thus continued in office without any interruption! Unlike other Andhra Chief Ministers, Telangana leaders always appointed Deputy Chief Ministers from the Andhra-seema region in their cabinets, so as to implement the six-point formula. Leave alone ‘developing Telangana’ our chief ministers never completed their full term so far. However, paradoxically, it is only non-Telangana chief ministers who not only completed their full terms but also created history. Chandra babu surpassing the record of Brahmananda reddy’s long tenure is a case in point. On the other hand, in the case of Telangana leaders, even a great leader like PV could not continue as chief minister of the state for one full year, whereas he completed five year term as prime minister of India, not withstanding his minority-party status at Delhi! In fact, PV was not a separatist like his predecessors, but an integrationist! However, he had to lose his position (CM) for hailing the decision of Supreme Court w.r.t. Mulki rules, as the Jai Andhra movement demanded his resignation. Of course, it is a different matter that even during PV’s regime, the state of Andhra Pradesh failed to get several pending projects cleared, leave alone developing Telangana! Thus, one can imagine the fate of Telangana, in any sector. Viewed in this backdrop, one finds it odd to offer convincing answers to critics who raise questions like why did Telangana leaders(as CMs and PM) fail to develop the region, why do these leaders keep mum when there were discriminatory policies being pursued, why did the Telangana intellectuals raise their voice only when there were non-congress regimes in the state, and whether there was any mandate for Telangana leaders to share power with the Congress party that makes a volte-face on the demand of state.

In any case, it is ridiculous to view Telangana state demand as demand for either ‘welfare’ or ‘development’, be it regionally or economically, as is propagated by the present chief minister. Because, once such argument is promoted, then there are electoral communists ready to join the chorus of raising the question of ‘backward regions’ and demand to treat Telangana on par with those backward regions of the state viz., Rayalaseema, Uttarandhra etc. Then they would be generously seeking the ‘packages’ ‘development funds’ from the central government and thereby confuse the genuine demand of Telangana state once for all. Further, it is also ridiculous to treat Telangana issue as the issue of ‘size’ or ‘administration’ of the region, as is diplomatically raised by the parties and groups like BJP and RSS. As a matter of fact, once the demand is conceded, the Telangana would be bigger state than those existing 16 states in India today! With a population of more than one and half times of that of Nepal, the Telangana state would be of 3.5 crore size. Unlike other three states which were created by the BJP in the year 2000, the state of Telangana does not require any special money for the construction of its state capital city, as the centuries-old Hyderabad is located in the heart of Telangana itself!

Was it also not the failure of the non-congress parties? At the other end, it so happened that the non-congress/opposition parties could not influence the ruling parties and leaders w.r.t. development of the region. At least, they could have strove for undertaking some irrigation and power projects here and there in Telangana. Further, these opposition parties failed to fight for ensuring employment opportunities, leave alone establishing some new industries in their region. In the name of industrialising backward region, the Andhra capitalists were cornering concessions and subsidies on the one hand, but they were importing employees from Andhra areas into Telangana-based industries. While Andhra capitalists were permitted to pollute Telangana lands and fields and thereby to derive industrial profits/benefits, they were not asked to employ the local youth in the Telangana industries. Instead, Nizam-established industries were being closed down and sold out to the Andhra entrepreneurs at a throw away prices.

But still these parties, particularly those from the communist ranks, albeit made some noise now and then, but colluded with the ruling parties/regimes, as if the Telangana development was not their botheration. Why is it that the opposition parties were indifferent to rising unemployment in Telangana? Why is that old irrigation projects were not being completed in Telangana, whereas new projects are planned in Andhra region? Pulichintala project that caters to the needs of third crop in the Coastal area is being implemented on war footing is a case in point. Why it is that farmers in the same state were treated in different ways, (for Andhra peasants were provided CHEAP water with canal-irrigation, whereas Telangana peasants were forced to go for COSTLY bore well-irrigation)? Why is it that there were no agitations being launched when non-local candidates were appointed against local quota, affecting the job-prospects of thousands of Telangana youth? Why is it that there were no agitations against the failure of implementing the G.O. No. 610? These are some questions that deserve answers from the communist parties which believe in equity and equality, linguistic unity, working class unity, peoples’ unity etc.

Was it not the communists’ betrayal of Telangana cause? For those of us who have studied the communist activities in Telangana, their silence alone would be the only answer. Since they cannot reject these questions as illogical, they have to pretend that their silence would speak better. Because, they are simply subjective, biased and opportunistic, they neglect any sort of objective analysis. They practice what they do not preach, or preach what they do not practice. They are hypocritical and played the game of villains, as far as Telangana is concerned. One can trace the roots of the communist hypocrisy in their age-old struggle for linguistic states. Their approach towards religion, region, caste and community are smacked of their farce-class analysis. While they were always engaged in class-analyses on the state, independence, nationalism, secularism, path of development in India, their activities were influenced by their opportunistic shifting stands. Their agitations were based on the sheer electoral objectives. Their elections were being influenced by their compromises on militancy. Their governments were being continued due to their collaborationist policies with their class enemies. As they colluded with their Andhra Congress counterparts in finalising the Telangana-merger, against the popular will of the Telangana people, in the name of VISHAALAANDHRA LO PRAJAA RAJYAM! They helped the Andhra capitalists to colonise Telangana internally so as to continue loot and plunder unabated.

Take the case of CPM leaders, who are playing the role of sabotage in Telangana, long before they emerged on the Indian political scene. Their Bengal BOSSES were competing with their counterparts in other states to attract foreign funds in Calcutta, but opposing the same in Delhi. One can cite several such hypocritical practices of the CPM, which expose their Bengal-bias on the one hand and myopic view of Telangana. That is not all. There is another dimension to their consistent opposition to the cause of Telangana state. More than their Bengal-bias (as some would believe that their opposition stems from their antipathy towards separate state demands of Gorkhaland and Northern Bengal etc), the Andhra-bias undermined the Telangana comrades. Thus, not a single Telangana comrade was ever elevated to the level of State Secretary, leave alone making him a politburo member! Two young Politbureau members, Sitaram yechury and Raghavulu(both hail from Andhra region) alone are controlling the party affairs completely today. Obviously, none can take on these Andhra comrades to question their Andhra-bias towards their Telangana counterparts!

Thanks to the heroic Telangana peasant struggle that cost the lives of ten thousand Telangana villagers, the Andhra communists (P.Sundarayya) became the main opposition leaders in the first Loksabha itself. Whereas, the Telangana leadership that bore brunt of feudal capitalist onslaughts has always been the loser, leave alone leading the Indian communist movement in Andhra at least! For, they did not trust Telangana mass leaders to occupy the highest party positions in the state till date. Thus, once Telangana mass leaders like DVRao, Omkar and BNReddy were ridiculed and dismissed from the party. On several occasions the party fielded Andhra comrades from Telangana constituencies/areas, but not the other way round. In the recent elections to LokSabha too, the CPM fielded a Bejawada Baburao from the Telangana seat (Bhadrachalam), whereas in the elections to the Rajyasabha, the party got one Nellore-Madhu-reddy elected. Even in the party positions too, less said the better, as Andhra comrades were always given leadership in some Telangana districts. But no Telangana leader is ever given any such position in the Andhra areas! This is not just history. Even today, Andhra comrades are leading the party units and frontal organisations in Hyderabad, Rangareddy, and few other Telangana districts are just a few cases in point. These are some bitter facts that are hardly covered in the Andhra-biased media.

Finally, if at all there are any obstacles that impact on the state formation, then it is those Andhra settlers who had grabbed the government positions, violating the legal- local-category norms by producing bogus mulki/local certificates. Obviously, the issue of non-local recruitment (G.O.No. 610 is a case in point) in Telangana region continues to be hanging in the air, as long as the Telangana state is not formed. And of course, there are some political leaders, incidentally, they are not elected representatives of the Telangana people in any sense, (for, they are appointed by the party high commands), who are the main hurdles in the formation of Telangana state. The two invisible entities, bogus bureaucrats and political parasites seem to be responsible for manipulating the Telangana politicians and elected representatives for the past 50 years! This is the crux of the whole problem that delayed the process of state formation. Thus, it is time we realise how this problem is to be solved at once, if at all democratic demand of state formation is to be achieved in the days to come.

An Open Letter to Sonia Gandhi

Dear Ma'am,

We are writing this letter to you, on behalf of Telanganites across India to inform you and request you to take appropriate decisions regarding democratic demand of Telangana people. We are supporting the just and democratic demand for Separate Telangana. We would like to gently remind you that you too campaigned for Congress party during the 2004 elections by accepting the demand for separate Telangana. The fact that Congress had electoral alliance with TRS, and willing to go ahead with the parties having only one objective to establish Telangana state, is in itself enough that you agreed for the formation of separate state. You have campaigned for Congress party with “Jai Telangana” slogan. That is exactly the reason, they voted for Congress and the current Chief Minister vows his power to the people of Telangana.

People of Telangana peacefully waited for four years for Congress party to honour the main election promise- to move the bill in the parliament for forming Telangana state. The wish of the people of Telangana was included in the common minimum programme of your UPA Government. The President of India, the highest constitutional authority in India, articulated it during his speech to Parliament. Then we, along with people of Telangana, believed that the process of formation of state will be started soon. After four years, people of Telangana are feeling cheated and betrayed.

The popular demand for separate state is now in the hands of a few people who are manipulating Congress party. We feel that the democratic demand for separate state is being deliberately undermined and insulted for the gain of these few individuals in the Congress party. This is not acceptable in a democratic country like India. We are writing to you to examine the facts and agree for the Telangana state immediately to avoid unfortunate events that might be created by the people who are for and against the formation of Telangana.

We have no political interest whatsoever. Some of our families were part of the popular Telangana movement during the process of re-organisation of the country. People of Telangana never agreed to be part of the Andhra Pradesh. The struggle continued for last fifty years- the longest struggle in post independent India. As you may be aware, whenever the people of Telangana had an opportunity, they expressed their preference for a separate state. In 1971 during the peak of Mrs. Indira Gandhi’s popularity, Telangana people have voted for separate state overwhelmingly electing 10 out of 11 Parliament seats. Again in 2004 they voted for the parties supporting separate state, including Congress party, defeating the most powerful politician then in the state and country. In 2006 bi-election, once again they expressed their anger, frustration and bitterness by defeating Congress. How many times do the Telangana people have to express their preference to live in separate state? They lost confidence on state of Andhra Pradesh. They do not need any prolonging in the name of building consensus. There is a consensus among all sections of Telangana people- artists, writers, elites, educated middle class, politicians, political parties, farmers, women - practically every one now wants to live in a separate state.

If there is a referendum more than 85% people of Telangana want separate state. That is what your own senior party leaders wanted to communicate to you in Delhi. They were humiliated because they were denied even the appointment. We on behalf of Telangana people wanted to meet you personally and explain the situation, but we decided to inform you through this open letter with a view that this is the faster way you might be able to listen and take action.

Powerful kingdoms have fallen. Six hundred years of Nizams rule in Hyderabad crumbled when they failed to listen to people. In democracy people are supreme. Listen to the people and their concerns. That is what we would like to request you through this open letter. YSR or Naidu will never agree for separate state. They are part of the problem. Building consensus for Telangana state is certainly required. But you cannot build consensus with those who are part of the problem. There is consensus within Telangana. Telangana will not be a small state, it will be bigger than18 Existing states of India.

Prolonging and delaying in establishing Telangana state will have serious consequences to AP and to Congress party. Your own party men are articulating in public as to how big a damage it might cause to you and you party. A further delay is not in the interest of people of Telagnana, Country or Congress. There is nothing wrong in two states speaking Telugu. The only section opposing formation of separate state is a handful of people who accumulated wealth, power with mafia type of operations intimidating political parties and people. That is exactly what the people of Telangana want to get rid of, and that is the reason we are supporting their just and democratic struggle as responsible people. Forming Telangana state is in the interest of all the Telugu speaking people all over the world.

It is not about development; Telangana people have lost faith in AP. They do not want to live with political, economic and cultural domination. They want to live in peace. They just need their own state. They are prepared to continue this struggle for as long as it takes. We are with them in a small way. We request you to be democratic and listen to people and not to some individuals who are benefiting through unfair means and controlling the political process.

Finally, we would like to state the following. The time is of the essence for any political process. People of Telangana are feeling frustrated and pushed to the wall. The crooked people who are opposing the millions of people’s democratic choice are going to provoke and create violence to prove that they can further intimidate and oppress Telangana people. That will lead to violence and chaos which is what we want you to avoid. As a national leader with moral consciousness, as some one who understands and appreciates the democratic values, you should take a decision now, before it is too late.

We would like to briefly remind you the past. In 1969, in almost similar situation, a CM ordered police firing on the Telangana people. More than 370 young people lost their lives. We are sure you do not want that kind of situation to repeat. No one wants that to repeat, no one wants some mothers to lose their children fighting for their just demand. That is what we are deeply concerned.

The forces opposing Telangana state are determined to create violence and create confusion. They are determined to humiliate the Telangana people with their money, power and mafia type of political operations. They are comparing Telangana with Kashmir, that itself is an indication that how far they can go to oppress the people of Telangana. We firmly believe that you should be completely informed without filtration about the actual situation, its historical past and the implications related to Telangana. We are deeply concerned about the manipulation that is going on to keep you in the dark regarding Telangana issue.

We are seriously concerned about the events that might unfold in future to suppress the democratic and popular demand for Telangana. Please avoid the bloodshed. You can do that. Please do not claim or exclaim later that you were not aware of the situation. That is the reason we are appealing to you through this open letter. You have means to know the actual situation. Just do it through independent and trusted sources. Not knowing the facts is not going to help you or avoid the unfortunate events that might be instigated by the forces opposing Telangana. We want complete peace and we believe that you can help in the formation of Telangana state.

One thing is certain, Telangana state will be formed. Why not now? Keep your promise to Telangana people and share the glory. We appeal to you to start the process for the formation of Telangana. Start now without any further delay. Please note that it is in your hands to save or ruin the Congress party in Telangana.

Sincerely,

Telangana Supercop

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Telangana Movement Gains Momentum

By M H Ahssan & Javed Hassan

With support for the bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh reaching a feverish pitch across the broad political spectrum, it is no longer a question of if but when the Telangana region would be carved out into a separate entity as the 29th state of the Indian Union. Forces led by the BJP, the Telangana Rashtra Samiti (TRS) and others have pulled the rug from under the Congress, which won the elections in 2004 by promising a separate state for the people of Telangana. Now that the opposition parties led by the BJP have jumped on the ‘separate Telangana’ bandwagon, the TDP has made a u-turn after opposing the movement all along, leaving the Congress party in the lurch.

Adding a new twist to the political dimensions of the Telangana movement, NRIs from Hyderabad working in Saudi Arabia) told HNN in an exclusive statement that the changing scenario in the state has placed Muslims on the horns of a dilemma. The worrisome factor, said Syed Zia-ur-Rahman, an NRI executive in Riyadh, is the future status of Hyderabad—whether it will be hived off from Andhra Pradesh as a union territory or made a joint capital of the two states.

Amid these twists and turns, the Nava Telangana Party (NTP), the brainchild of former TDP leader Devender Goud, has sought to hog the limelight through his ‘Telangana Yatra’, which he undertook last month to mobilize support for his party. He has also launched his own website in the Barrack Obama style, with news bulletins in English and Telugu. Video clips show Goud canvassing for his party among the scheduled castes, farmers and the Telangana Employees’ Association which, according to the NTP web news, has joined hands with the party.

Throughout his yatra which wended its way through the Telangana region, Goud harangued his audience, heaped abuses on the TDP and the Congress, while his party workers went about pasting “Telangana State” stickers on buses, buildings and other public places. There were pictures of Dr. B.R. Ambedkar to reinforce NTP’s message as the party of the downtrodden.

Not to be outmaneuvered , even the left parties and those representing the OBCs (Other Backward Classes) have veered round to the ‘separate Telangana’ movement which, they hope, would augur well for the future of that region. The theme of their political rhetoric is the same: they all want an end to the exploitation by the state leadership on the economic, educational and employment fronts.

The shift in the political landscape of the state has upped the ante against the Congress, which finds itself in a bind. If it goes along with Majlis Ittehad-ul-Muslimeen (MIM), which wants the Congress to oppose the ‘separate Telangana’ campaign, it risks losing vote during next year’s elections. On the other hand, if it chooses to go with the flow, it could alienate the Muslims. Although the TDP has counseled its ally to back the Telangana movement, the Congress leadership continues to dither for the time being. However, according to all available indications, it is a matter of time before the Congress High Command could cave in, setting the stage for the next big move.

There is a rationale behind all this political drama that is being played out, .both at the Centre and in the state capital. Andhra Pradesh goes to the polls towards the middle of next year, at a time when the Rajasekhara Reddy government is hamstrung by an anti-incumbency factor. Briefing the Congress president Sonia Gandhi on the situation facing his party, the chief minister is said to have stressed that an assembly resolution endorsing the proposal for the creation of Telangana could help neutralise this anti-incumbency sentiment.

With the TDP’s about-turn on the Telangana issue, the Congress is wilting under enormous pressure to scuttle the move. On top of this, Chandrababu Naidu is seeking electoral alliance with K Chandrasekhara Rao of TRS in the Telangana region. The ruling party thus finds itself vulnerable to the ebb and flow of the political tide sweeping across the state.

TDP’s change in its political stance came about when Chandrasekhara Rao left the TDP in 2001 and spearheaded the movement for Telangana under the banner of his own political party, Telangana Rashtra Samiti. Secondly, both the leaders were facing serious threat to their political survival. While the TDP was plagued by defections to the new party of popular film star Chiranjeevi, Chandrasekhara Rao found himself on slippery ground in the wake of a serious threat posed by Goud’s NTP.

Explaining its aims and objectives, Goud said his party will strive for the formation of Telangana state, for which action will be taken both at the political and street levels through agitations. "The party will take up the problems and issues of all sections of society, including the Dalits, tribal and Muslims", he pointed out. Goud, who had resigned from TDP on June 23 this year, said he was forced to launch his new outfit as the Congress and TDP were stonewalling over support to Telangana and its people.

These developments forced the hands of TDP President N Chandrababu Naidu in reaching out to CPM, CPI and TRS leaders for their support to his party's decision to back the demand for a separate Telangana state. Naidu's move is politically significant as the CPM, the CPI and the TRS are in the process of forging an alliance against the Congress and the BJP in the Assembly elections likely to be held in February 2009. "I spoke to the CPI and the CPM leaders as also with the Telangana Rashtra Samiti leader K Chandrasekhar Rao. I briefed them about our five-member core committee's recommendations on Telangana and that we are favouring separate Telangana," Naidu said, unveiling his campaign strategy.

Against this background comes the statement of MIM president and other Hyderabad State Muslim leaders who feel that by agreeing to the creation of the new state of Telangana, the Congress would be playing into the hands of the BJP, which has been advocating the Telangana cause ardently.

As things stand, MIM has very little space for political maneuvering given the fact that the TRS, a one-time ally of the Congress, ordered four of its MPs to resign in an act of brinkmanship to keep the heat on the UPA. The move coincided with similar resignations tendered by 16 TRS MLAs and its three MLCs from the Andhra Legislative Assembly and Council respectively. TRS wants the Telangana region to be carved out into a separate state—a pledge to which the Congress had committed itself in the 2004state assembly elections.

It took this line of action when the Congress failed to heed its ultimatum given earlier setting March 6 this year as the deadline for the bifurcation of the state.TRS president K Chandrasekhara Rao said the party will also launch a door- to- door campaign to explain the mass the betrayal by the Congress.

However, MIM, Jamaat-e-Islami and other Muslim organizations have distanced themselves from the Telangana movement due to their apprehension that Muslims may not get a fair deal under the new dispensation. They are also upset over being side-tracked during the ongoing political wheeling and dealing concerning the Telangana issue.

To quote MIM president Asaduddin Owaisi who spelled out his party’s stand on this issue, “It is not that we are opposed to Telangana per se. If a new state is formed, the tally of seats of our party in elections will go up. But we have to first ensure the safety and welfare of Muslims and other things such as the future of Urdu language. Whether these will be safe in Telangana is the issue.’’

As an indication of the shape of things to come, Owaisi cited the recent Vatoli incident when a family of six Muslims was hacked to death in a Telangana village. While MIM’s concern in this regard is understandable, the same factor had influenced their voting behaviour during the Legislative Assembly elections held in Karnataka in May this year. Although the BJP swept the polls and formed a government by engineering defections from the Congress, the status of Muslim representation in the BJP government remained unchanged—a Muslim minister in charge of Awqaf and minority affairs plus some political patronage here and there.

As a sop for the next year’s elections, they have been given some concessions in terms of education and employment opportunities. Furthermore, infrastructural facilities, such as laying new pipelines for water supply or replacing the leaky ones in some Muslim-dominated areas, were put in place with an eye on the upcoming elections. So the bottom line has remained the same. Whether it is the Congress or the BJP at the helm of affairs, some ad hoc cosmetic measures could always be expected as part of their strategy to tap into the Muslim vote bank.

Under these circumstances, continued Muslim opposition to the formation of a separate Telangana state would not be in the interest of Muslims, as it could provide ammunition to the BJP to further isolate the community. As the situation stands, almost all the political parties are now in favour of the bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh, with the Congress expected to come on board anytime during the run-up to the elections. Surely, Muslims would not like to be seen as the lone dissenters under these circumstances.

As MP Asaduddin Owaisi put it, the BJP would emerge stronger if a separate Telangana State was created. “The so-called secular parties cannot match the BJP after creation of Telangana State. The future of Dalits, weaker sections and minorities would be bleak in separate Telangana,” he pointed out.

Yet, the fact remains that the conflict has assumed a caste dimension. Other backward classes (OBCs) are seeking to use the Telangana card to consolidate their political base across the state. This game of one-upmanship is part of their ploy to outmanoeuvre the politically powerful Reddys and Kammas who dominate the political apparatus of the state in spite of their small numbers.

Although TRS leader K Chandrasekhar Rao is a higher caste Velama, the banner of Telangana across party lines has been hoisted both by OBCs and Scheduled Caste leaders. Even the Nizamabad Congress MP Madhu Yaski Goud, an OBC, blasted the AP government for its soft-pedaling over the formation of Telangana.

Sarvey Satyanarayana, Congress MP from Siddipet and an SC leader, also spoke in a similar vein, while. other OBC Congress MPs like Anjan Kumar Yadav from Secunderabad are orchestrating their move to jump on to the Telangana bandwagon. Andhra Congress chief Keshava Rao also seems ready to toe the same line.

Another point that should be noted is that .BJP has mobilized Gujarat chief minister Narendra Modi in its campaign for the creation of Telangana state. "The party is organising a massive rally of Narendra Modi in Telangana in December. Modi has already proved his mettle by winning the Nano small car project for his state amid fierce competition from Andhra Pradesh and other states after the Tatas decided to pull out of West Bengal last month in the wake of stiff opposition from Mamta Bannerjee’s Trinamool Congress.

Already, BJP’s Prime Ministerial candidate L K Advani sounded upbeat recently when he told a massive rally during an electioneering campaign in Hyderabad that the people were now looking forward to the BJP for the creation of the Telangana state. To this end, Modi has been roped in for his pro-development image. Advani also pledged on the same occasion that the saffron party, if voted to power, would expedite the formation of Telangana state within 100 days.

In this context, actor-turned-politician Chiranjeevi took the plunge with the launch of his Praja Rajyam Party (PRP) that, he said, would support the formation of a separate Telangana State that existed from 1948 to 1956, when it was trifurcated by the States’ Reorganisation Commission along linguistic lines. "It is for the Central government to take a decision on creation of Telangana State. If it comes up with such a proposal, our party will not be an obstacle at any cost," he observed.

"I know the people of this region are overwhelmingly in favour of a separate state. I respect your feelings. If you are convinced that creation of a separate state will ensure rapid development, I am with you," Chiranjeevi said, emphasizing social justice as the main plank of his political platform.

Chirnjeevi observed: “It will be a party for backward classes, farmers, workers, women and youth. The party will work for development, modernisation and industrial revolution. Its goal will be 'santosh' and 'ananda' (contentment and happiness)," he said, adding: "I know your problems, pains and sufferings and will always stand by you. Let us strive for achieving it."

However, a cross-section of NRIs contacted by HNN in Riyadh, the Saudi capital, has dismissed these pledges as nothing more than a camouflage for masking their own high-voltage ambitions. Dr. Abid Moiz, a veteran NRI working as a nutritionist in the Saudi Ministry of Health in Riyadh, said: “In my opinion, no party is championing the cause of Telangana. Every party wants to gain political mileage by raising the Telangana issue.” Citing the case of Devender Goud who left the TDP to launch his own political outfit (TRS), he asked: “Why did they remain silent when they were in power? Why are they raising the Telangana issue now? Obviously, it is for personal benefit, the most important of which is becoming the CM.”

He also did not think that the separatist movement would serve the interests of the people, both economically and politically. “No. We live in a global village. We will not benefit from separating ourselves from others. Maybe, a separate Telangana will better serve government employees and, of course, politicians.”

On the question of MIM’s opposition to a separate Telangana since the 1960s, Dr. Moiz told HNN: “ They are of the opinion that the BJP's influence is widespread in the Telangana region, where the language widely spoken is Urdu. It is my personal opinion that when the states are carved out on linguistic basis, then this area should be made Hyderabad state with Urdu as its language. In the past Telangana was part of Hyderabad, whose official language was Urdu. Hyderabad was then split into three parts on the basis of language and these areas were merged with Kannada-, Marathi- and Telugu- speaking areas of Karnataka, Maharashtra and Andhra, which subsequently became Andhra Pradesh. Then, what about Urdu?”

Urdu columnist-cum-photographer K.N.Wasif, who works for a Riyadh-based Saudi Arabic magazine, too, attributed the political fireworks to personal rivalries and high ambitions. He said Chandrashekhar Rao, founder of Telangana Rashtriya Samithi (TRS), left the TDP to form his own party following some differences with Chandrababu Naidu , the TDP supremo. Meanwhile, there are two new kids on political bloc— Praja Rajyam led by Chiranjeevi, mega star of the Telugu film industry with a big fan following, and Devender Goud who launched NTP after resigning from TDP.

“He also claims that he will fight against the injustice meted out to the people from Telangana. He was a minister in the TDP government and is considered to be the right hand man of Chandrababu Naidu. Anyhow, he is a small -time leader and doesn't have a large following like Chiranjeevi, who poses a serious challenge for TDP. The Congress has yet to spell out its stand on the separate Telangana movement.”

Making a swipe at the parties, Wasif said the Telangana movement has always been led “by politically unemployed persons who are not sincere in their support for the cause. If at all a separate Telangana state is formed, it will be beneficial for some politicians but it will not be in the greater interest of the people of Telangana, which was always a backward area. After it becomes a separate state, it will become more backward.”

He said MIM had always been against a separate Telangana state since 1969 when the late Dr. Chenna Reddy spearheaded the movement on a mass scale. “Why MIM is against the movement is a big debate which I cannot discuss here.”

According to Syed Zia-ur-Rahman, Executive Director of Al-Ma’awiya Group of Polyclinics, separate Telangana was a burning issue in the last election for almost all
the political parties. However, it was TRS which spearheaded the campaign.to upstage others who were also fighting for this cause.

Asked if the movement will safeguard the interests of the people , both economically and politically, Zia said: “I don't think so, because during the period of NTR many people from Andhra moved to the Telangana area. They are now holding top positions in the
government and business and controlling the economy of the state. Telangana is a very backward area with a poor educational background. They also don't have any resources, especially the Telangana Muslims, who are going to face a lot of challenges.”

Zia, who hails from Jangaon in Warangal district, said popular reaction there to the movement has been mixed, with mostly the Hindu electorate being in favour. However, some Muslims have also fallen in line without being aware of its future implications.

On the question of BJP’s support, he attributed it to the Hindu vote bank. “If they establish a separate Telangana, for sure they can form the government, as they do not have a substantial presence in the Andhra region.”

Zia observed that the separatist movement has always been opposed by MIM, “ because it is not in the interests of Muslims. Once they create a Telangana state, they will separate Hyderabad from Telangana like Delhi from UP. Alternatively, they could make Hyderabad the joint capital for Andhra and Telangana.”

The campaign for a separate Telangana state recalls a similar struggle during the 1990's when the late Chandulal Chadrakar set up a political forum, the Chhattisgarh Rajya Nirman Manch, to spearhead the drive for the formation of Chhattisgarh from 16 districts of Madhya Pradesh. The campaign, which was propped up by major political parties, including the Congress and the BJP, gained momentum as it coincided with other separatist movements for Uttarkhand and Jharkhand during 1998-99.

During that year, the BJP-led Union Government drafted a bill for the constitution of a separate state of Chhattisgarh. The draft bill was sent to the Madhya Pradesh assembly, which unanimously approved it in 1998, with some modifications. Thus, Chhattisgarh came into being as the 26th state of the Indian Union on November 1, 2000 by the force of circumstances that also triggered the birth of Uttarkhand carved out of Himachal Pradesh as the 27th state on November 9 and Jharkhand out of southern Bihar as the 28th state on November 15 during the same year. The BJP, which has installed its own candidates in Uttarkhand and Chhattisgarh as chief ministers, sees in Telangana a similar opportunity to don the mantle of leadership. No wonder, it has mobilized its political heavy weights to improve its fortunes in the polls.

The Telangana movement shares with these three states a common factor—under-development resulting from the exploitation of its economic and natural resources. As P.L.Vishweshwer Rao, Professor and Head, Department of Communication & Journalism, Osmania University, notes in his article: “No movement, no struggle has ever started from the top: from intellectuals, thinkers, political and other leaders, elected representatives and so on. Inevitably, the struggles begin from people - the people give expression to their suffering because it is they who are victims of status quo. The long-dormant hope in the people of Telangana was awakened with the announcement as statehood for Uttarakhand by the then Prime Minister H.D. Deve Gowda. Within a year it has gathered so much strength that politicians, realizing its potential have jumped on to its bandwagon”.

He elaborates that the Telangana region has the lowest literacy rate and minimal educational infrastructure in the state. As many as eight districts of Telangana out of 10 (including Hyderabad) figure among the most backward educationally. “Mahbubnagar has the lowest literacy rate, both among males (40.8 per cent) and females(18 percent). The entire Telangana, except Hyderabad city and Ranga Reddy Urban areas which are in Hyderabad, has lagged behind educationally. Not a single mandal of Telangana has the national literacy rate of 52.19 percent.”

It is against this background that that a move is under way to prevent the exploitation of Telangana-based college managements by their counterparts from coastal districts. Hundreds of colleges belonging to Telangana managements have reportedly crashed in the competition. For this reason, TRS president K. Chandrasekhar Rao has warned that colleges run by non-Telangana managements would be banned in separate Telangana.

In fact, the birth of Maoism in Telangana, is said to be partly an offshoot of exploitation by people from the Andhra region, some of whom obtained fake degree certificates to corner jobs in Hyderabad. They also used these tricks to remain entrenched in government positions which, in turn, armed them with decision making powers.

On the economic front, they exploited its rich mineral resources as well as the Krishna and Godavari rivers that are the major sources of irrigation for the entire state. Andhra farmers reportedly went even further by cultivating water-intensive crops depleting its water resources. They also preferred cash to food crops to boost their own income while jacking up food prices as a result of these misplaced priorities.

For these reasons, Telangana has been ranked among the most under-developed regions in the country with all its nine districts, excluding Hyderabad, designated “backward” by the Centre. These districts now receive special assistance from the Central government’s Backward Regions Grant Fund. Under these circumstances, the people of Telangana and its parties see statehood as the only viable route to development. Whether their bread will be evenly buttered for everyone remains a matter of speculation at this stage.

One of the strong points of Telangana , however, is its IT industry which gained prominence during the tenure of the former TDP Chief Minister Chandra Babu Naidu. Thanks to its highly skilled manpower base, Hyderabad carved out a niche for itself as India’s second Silicon Valley after Bangalore with its IT and IT- enabled services, pharmaceuticals and entertainment industries. It should leverage its strength in these sectors to create more job opportunities for the people and stimulate economic development to a new pitch.

It is a tribute to Telangana that IT bellwether Infosys of Bangalore has embarked on the construction of its second campus, spread over 447 acres, at Pocharam, near Hyderabad, with a total investment of Rs 1,250 crores. The ground -breaking ceremony of the Infosys SEZ campus was held at Pocharam village in the neighbouring Ranga Reddy district.

Chairman of the Board and Chief Mentor of Infosys Technologies Ltd. N R Narayana Murthy has said that their decision to locate the project in that village was taken in view of the high infrastructure facilities in Hyderabad to make it a premier IT destination.

The Infosys campus at Pocharam is expected to accommodate over 25,000 employees and will be completed over a period of 10 years under a three-phase plan. Work is in progress on the first phase, scheduled to be completed in a three-year period, with a seating capacity of 10,000 employees. The initial investment will amount to Rs 600 crore. Telangana can be justifiably proud of its track record in the IT sector as it looks forward to its future as a separate state.

Friday, July 01, 2016

Telangana Slips Into Agitation 2.0 As KCR Plans 'Kejriwal Act' At Delhi

By M H AHSSAN | INNLIVE

Telangana state is geared up to agitation 2.0 demanding the proper bifurcation of the state on certain long pending issues.

Two years after he secured the state of Telangana after a 13-year-long struggle, K Chandrasekhar Rao will wear the hat of a protester once again. The chief minister of Telangana now plans to do an Arvind Kejriwal by sitting on a dharna in the country's capital, to protest against the delay in bifurcation of the High court of Hyderabad.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Telangana Movement Enters in a Decisive Phase

With support for the bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh gaining momentum across the broad political spectrum, it is no longer a question of if but when the Telangana region would be carved out into a separate entity as the 29th state of the Indian Union.

Forces led by the BJP, the Telangana Rashtra Samiti (TRS), Nava Telangana Party (NTP) and others have pulled the rug from under the Congress, which won the elections in 2004 by promising a separate state for the people of Telangana. Now that the opposition parties led by the BJP have jumped on the ‘separate Telangana’ bandwagon, the TDP made a u-turn after opposing the movement all along, leaving the Congress-led UPA in the lurch.

Even the left parties and those representing the OBCs (Other Backward Classes) have veered round to the ‘separate Telangana’ movement which, they hope, would augur well for the future of people in that region, which was exploited by the state leadership on the economic, educational and employment fronts.

The shift in the political landscape of the state has upped the ante against the Congress, which finds itself in a bind. If it goes along with Majlis Ittehad-ul-Muslimeen (MIM), which wants the Congress to oppose the ‘separate Telangana’ campaign, it risks losing vote during next year’s elections. On the other hand, if it chooses to go with the flow, it could alienate the Muslims. Although the TDP has counseled its ally to back the Telangana movement, the Congress leadership continues to dither for the time being. However, according to all available indications, it is a matter of time before the Congress High Command would give its green light to the movement.


There is a rationale behind all this political drama that is being played out, .both at the Centre and in the state capital. Andhra Pradesh goes to the polls towards the middle of next year, at a time when the Rajasekhara Reddy government is hamstrung by an anti-incumbency factor. Briefing the Congress president Sonia Gandhi on the situation facing his party, the chief minister is said to have stressed that an assembly resolution endorsing the proposal for the creation of Telangana could help neutralise this anti-incumbency sentiment.

With the TDP’s about-turn on the Telangana issue, the Congress is wilting under enormous pressure to oppose the move. On top of this, Chandrababu Naidu is seeking electoral alliance with K Chandrasekhara Rao of TRS in the Telangana region. The ruling party thus finds itself vulnerable to the ebb and flow of the political tide sweeping across the state.


TDP’s change in its political stance came about when Chandrasekhara Rao left the TDP in 2001 and spearheaded the movement for Telangana under the banner of his own political party, Telangana Rashtra Samiti. Secondly, both the leaders were facing serious threat to their political survival. While the TDP was plagued by defections to the new party of popular film star Chiranjeevi, Chandrasekhara Rao’s position became vulnerable in the wake of a serious threat posed by "Nava Telangana Praja Party” launched by T Devender Goud, the former senior leader of TDP.

Explaining its aims and objectives, Goud said his party will strive for the formation of Telangana state, for which action will be taken both at the political and street levels through agitations. "The party will take up the problems and issues of all sections of society, including the Dalits, tribal and Muslims", he pointed out. Goud, who had resigned from TDP on June 23 this year, said he was forced to launch his new outfit as the Congress and TDP were stonewalling over support to Telangana and its people.

These developments forced the hands of TDP President N Chandrababu Naidu in reaching out to CPM, CPI and TRS leaders for their support to his party's decision to back the demand for a separate Telangana state. Naidu's move is politically significant as the CPM, the CPI and the TRS are in the process of forging an alliance against the Congress and the BJP in the Assembly elections likely to be held in February 2009. "I spoke to the CPI and the CPM leaders as also with the Telangana Rashtra Samiti leader K Chandrasekhar Rao. I briefed them about our five-member core committee's recommendations on Telangana and that we are favouring separate Telangana," Naidu said, mapping out his campaign strategy.

Against this background comes the statement of MIM president and other Hyderabad State Muslim leaders who feel that by agreeing to the creation of the new state of Telangana, the Congress would be playing into the hands of the BJP, which has been advocating the Telangana cause ardently.


As things stand, MIM has very little space for political maneuvering given the fact that the TRS, a one-time ally of the Congress, ordered four of its MPs to resign in an act of brinkmanship to keep the heat on the UPA. The move coincided with similar resignations tendered by 16TRS MLAs and its three MLCs from the Andhra Legislative Assembly and Council respectively. TRS wants the Telangana region to be carved out into a separate state—a pledge to which the Congress had committed itself in the 2004 state assembly elections.

It took this line of action when the Congress failed to heed its ultimatum given earlier setting March 6 this year as the deadline for the bifurcation of the state.TRS president K Chandrasekhara Rao said the party will also launch a door- to- door campaign to explain the mass the betrayal by the Congress.


However, MIM, Jamaat-e-Islami and other Muslim organizations have distanced themselves from the Telangana movement due to their apprehension that Muslims may not get a fair deal under the new dispensation. They are also upset over being side-tracked during the ongoing political wheeling and dealing concerning the Telangana issue.

To quote MIM president Asaduddin Owaisi who spelled out his party’s stand on this issue, “It is not that we are opposed to Telangana per se. If a new state is formed, the tally of seats of our party in elections will go up. But we have to first ensure the safety and welfare of Muslims and other things such as the future of Urdu language. Whether these will be safe in Telangana is the issue.’’


As an indicator of the shape of things to come, Owaisi cited the recent Vatoli incident when a family of six Muslims was hacked to death in a Telangana village. "That is why the BJP is so keen on a new state of Telangana," some Muslim leaders argue.

The same concern had exercised their minds when Muslims voted in strength against the BJP during the Legislative Assembly elections held in Karnataka in May this year. Although the BJP swept the polls and formed a government by engineering defections from the Congress, the status of Muslim representation in the BJP government remained unchanged—a Muslim minister in charge of Awqaf and minority affairs plus some political patronage here and there.


As a sop for the next year’s elections, they have been given some concessions in terms of education and employment opportunities. Furthermore, infrastructural facilities, such as laying new pipelines for water supply or replacing the leaky ones in some Muslim-dominated areas, were put in place with an eye on the upcoming elections. So the bottom line has remained the same. Whether it is the Congress or the BJP at the helm of affairs, some ad hoc cosmetic measures could always be expected as part of their strategy to tap into the Muslim vote bank.

Under these circumstances, continued Muslim opposition to the formation of a separate Telangana state would not be in the interest of Muslims, as it could provide ammunition to the BJP to further isolate the community. As the situation stands, almost all the political parties are now in favour of the bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh, with the Congress expected to come on board anytime during the run-up to the elections. Surely, Muslims would not like to be seen as the lone dissenters, even though they have taken a principled stand.

As MP Asaduddin Owaisi put it, the BJP would emerge stronger if a separate Telangana State was created. “The so-called secular parties cannot match the BJP after creation of Telangana State. The future of Dalits, weaker sections and minorities would be bleak in separate Telangana,” he pointed out.

Yet, the fact remains that the conflict has assumed a caste dimension, with other backward classes (OBCs) seeking to use the Telangana card to consolidate their political base across the state. This game of one-upmanship is part of their ploy to out-manoeuvre the politically powerful Reddys and Kammas who dominate the political apparatus of the state in spite of their small numbers.


Although TRS leader K Chandrasekhar Rao is a higher caste Velama, the banner of Telangana across party lines has been hoisted both by OBCs and Scheduled Caste leaders. Even the Nizamabad Congress MP Madhu Yaski Goud, an OBC, berated the AP government for its soft-pedaling over the formation of Telangana.

Sarvey Satyanarayana, Congress MP from Siddipet and an SC leader, also spoke in a similar vein, while. other OBC Congress MPs like Anjan Kumar Yadav from Secunderabad are orchestrating their move to jump on to the Telangana bandwagon. Even Andhra Congress chief Keshava Rao seems ready to toe the same line.


Another point that should be noted is that .BJP has mobilized Gujarat chief minister Narendra Modi in its campaign for the creation of Telangana state. "The party is organising a massive rally of Narendra Modi in Telangana in December. The dates are yet to be finalised," said party leader Venkaiah Naidu in a chat with newsmen recently. Modi has already proved his mettle by winning the Nano small car project for his state amid fierce competition from Andhra Pradesh and other states after the Tatas decided to pull out of West Bengal last month in the wake of stiff opposition from Mamta Bannerjee’s Trinamool Congress.

Already, BJP’s Prime Ministerial candidate L K Advani sounded upbeat recently when he told a massive rally during an electioneering campaign in Hyderabad that the people were now looking forward to the BJP for the creation of the Telangana state. To this end, Modi has been roped in for his pro-development image. Advani also pledged on the same occasion that the saffron party, if voted to power, would expedite the process of Telangana formation within 100 days.


In this context, actor-turned-politician Chiranjeevi took the plunge with the launch of his Praja Rajyam Party (PRP) that, he said, would support the formation of separate Telangana State. "It is for the Central government to take a decision on creation of Telangana State. If it comes up with such a proposal, our party will not be an obstacle at any cost," he observed.

"I know the people of this region are overwhelmingly in favour of a separate state. I respect your feelings. If you are convinced that creation of a separate state will ensure rapid development, I am with you," Chiranjeevi said, emphasizing social justice as the main plank of his political platform.

Chirnjeevi observed: “It will be a party for backward classes, farmers, workers, women and youth. The party will work for development, modernisation and industrial revolution. Its goal will be 'santosh' and 'ananda' (contentment and happiness)," he said, adding: "I know your problems, pains and sufferings and will always stand by you. Let us strive for achieving it." Muslim parties should factor in these political equations while formulating their stand.

They also need to come up with a reformist agenda that recognizes the importance of English as the medium of instruction in schools run by them. Even Malayalis, who are so passionate about their mother tongue, are admitting their children to English-medium schools in order to give them a competitive edge in the employment market.


By focusing on Urdu, Muslim parties will no doubt firm up their political base in the community. But they will also be playing into the hands of parties with a vested interest to keep them educationally backward. No wonder, the late Prime Minister P.V.Narasimha Rao had promptly accepted Muslim demand for the formation of an Urdu university in Hyderabad during his term of office.

He saw in it a double-edged weapon that could kill two birds with one shot: win the Muslim vote for the Congress and also keep them on the bottom rungs of the ladder of national development. It was a strategic move that harks us back to the time of Sir Syed Ahmed Khan, whose far-sightedness inspired the launch of Mohammedan Anglo-Oriental College in 1875 which was later upgraded into the full-fledged Aligarh Muslim University in 1920. So while there can be no argument over the need to promote Urdu, study of English should also be prioritized in the schools’ curricula.


The campaign for a separate Telangana state recalls a similar struggle during the 1990's when the late Chandulal Chadrakar set up a political forum, the Chhattisgarh Rajya Nirman Manch, to spearhead the drive for the formation of Chhattisgarh from 16 districts of Madhya Pradesh. The campaign, which was propped up by major political parties, including the Congress and the BJP, gained momentum as it coincided with other separatist movements for Uttarkhand and Jharkhand during 1998-99.

During that year, the BJP-led Union Government drafted a bill for the constitution of a separate state of Chhattisgarh. The draft bill was sent to the Madhya Pradesh assembly, which unanimously approved it in 1998, with some modifications. Thus, Chhattisgarh came into being as the 26th state of the Indian Union on November 1, 2000 by the force of circumstances that also triggered the birth of Uttarkhand carved out of Himachal Pradesh as the 27th state on November 9 and Jharkhand out of southern Bihar as the 28th state on November 15 during the same year. The BJP, which has installed its own candidates in Uttarkhand and Chhattisgarh as chief ministers, sees in Telangana a similar opportunity to don the mantle of leadership. No wonder, it has mobilized its political heavy weights to boost its fortunes in the polls.

The Telangana movement shares with these three states a common factor—under-development resulting from the exploitation of its economic and natural resources. As P.L.Vishweshwer Rao, Professor and Head, Department of Communication & Journalism, Osmania University, notes in his article: “No movement, no struggle has ever started from the top: from intellectuals, thinkers, political and other leaders, elected representatives and so on. Inevitably, the struggles begin from people - the people give expression to their suffering because it is they who are victims of status quo. The long-dormant hope in the people of Telangana was awakened with the announcement as statehood for Uttarakhand by the then Prime Minister H.D. Deve Gowda. Within a year it has gathered so much strength that politicians, realizing its potential have jumped on to its bandwagon”.

He elaborates that the Telangana region has the lowest literacy rate and minimal educational infrastructure in the state. As many as eight districts of Telangana out of 10 (including Hyderabad) figure among the most backward educationally. “Mahbubnagar has the lowest literacy rate, both among males (40.8 per cent) and females(18 percent). The entire Telangana, except Hyderabad city and Ranga Reddy Urban areas which are in Hyderabad, has lagged behind educationally. Not a single mandal of Telangana has the national literacy rate of 52.19 percent.”

It is against this background that that a move is under way to prevent the exploitation of Telangana-based college managements by their counterparts from coastal districts. Hundreds of colleges belonging to Telangana managements have reportedly crashed in the competition. For this reason, TRS president K. Chandrasekhar Rao has warned that colleges run by non-Telangana managements would be banned in separate Telangana.

In fact, the birth of Maoism in Telangana, is said to be partly an offshoot of exploitation by people from the Andhra region, some of whom obtained fake degree certificates to corner jobs in Hyderabad. They also used these tricks to remain entrenched in government positions which, in turn, armed them with decision making powers.

On the economic front, they exploited its rich mineral resources as well as the Krishna and Godavari rivers that are the major sources of irrigation for the entire state. Andhra farmers reportedly went even further by cultivating water-intensive crops depleting its water resources. They also preferred cash to food crops to boost their own income while jacking up food prices as a result of these misplaced priorities.

For these reasons, Telangana has been ranked among the most under-developed regions in the country with all its nine districts, excluding Hyderabad, designated “backward” by the Centre. These districts now receive special assistance from the Central government’s Backward Regions Grant Fund. Under these circumstances, the people of Telangana and its parties see statehood as the only viable route to development.

One of the strong points of Telangana is its IT industry which gained prominence during the tenure of the former TDP Chief Minister Chandra Babu Naidu. Thanks to its highly skilled manpower base, Hyderabad carved out a niche for itself as India’s second Silicon Valley after Bangalore with its IT and IT- enabled services, pharmaceuticals and entertainment industries. It should leverage its strength in these sectors to create more job opportunities for the people and stimulate economic development to a new pitch.

It is a tribute to Telangana that IT bellwether Infosys of Bangalore has embarked on the construction of its second campus, spread over 447 acres, at Pocharam, near Hyderabad, with a total investment of Rs 1,250 crores. The ground -breaking ceremony of the Infosys SEZ campus was held at Pocharam village in the neighbouring Ranga Reddy district.

Chairman of the Board and Chief Mentor of Infosys Technologies Ltd. N R Narayana Murthy has said that their decision to locate the project there was taken in view of the high infrastructure facilities in Hyderabad to make it a premier IT destination.

The Infosys campus at Pocharam is expected to accommodate over 25,000 employees and will be completed over a period of 10 years under a three-phase plan. Work is in progress on the first phase, scheduled to be completed in a three-year period, with a seating capacity of 10,000 employees. The initial investment will amount to Rs 600 crore. Telangana can be justifiably proud of its track record in the IT sector as it looks forward to its future as a separate state.

Thursday, April 02, 2015

Telangana To Receive And Enjoy 'Full Incurred Revenues'

The constant theme in Andhra-Telangana regional politics has been that of state revenues from each region, with various attempts by official bodies to calculate their relative differences.

The Dar Commission, appointed by the Constituent Assembly in 1948, found that the annual revenues (during 1945-48) from the Telugu districts of Madras Province was Rs 17.00 crore while the population was 1.88 crore - giving a per capita annual revenue of Rs 9.04.

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

In Hyd, Chicken Crosses Road From Andhra To Telangana

By Sheshagiri Rao | Hyderabad

In a city bitterly divided over the move to carve out a new state of Telangana from Andhra Pradesh and make it the joint capital, the tension is spilling over from political speeches and street protests to simpler things in life such as menu cards and restaurant names.

Traditionally, the ‘meals ready’ sign outside restaurants in and around Hyderabad meant mouth-watering, spicy ‘Andhra’ food cooked in the coastal Andhra style. Not anymore.
‘Andhra’ is now a sensitive word and people in Hyderabad are treading gingerly on the emotive issue.

As the state teeters on the brink of being split, the famous ‘Andhra meal’ is running into competition from the ‘Telangana thali’, introduced in deference to pro-Telangana sentiments. What used to be an ‘Andhra mess’ is now just a ‘mess’ or ‘students mess’.

Monday, December 02, 2013

Why The Idea Of 'Rayala Telangana' Is Back On Table?

By M H Ahssan | INN Live

"Can't say" was the cryptic reply by Andhra Pradesh Deputy Chief minister, Damodar Rajanarasimha, when asked if the idea of Rayala Telangana state was gaining currency with the Group of Ministers (GoM). Rajanarasimha's reply, which also conveyed a crestfallen frame of mind, was a clear indication that the Centre was hardly open about what it planned to do with Andhra Pradesh. It was only when Rajanarasimha was asked for his reaction to a possible Rayala Telangana state by a Congress leader during his visit to Delhi last week that realisation dawned on him that Rayala Telangana as a proposal had not been dumped.  

Saturday, October 05, 2013

Which New State Is Being Created: Telangana Or Andhra?

By M H Ahssan / INN Live

In the December of Year 2000, India's 26th, 27th and 28th states, namely Uttarakhand, Jharkhand and Chhattisgarh, were born. They came out of the shadows of their parent provinces split from -- Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and Madhya Pradesh, respectively. With new capitals, they were to find their separate identities. But the case of the upcoming 29th state, Telangana, is starkly different. 

Its birth would eclipse the parent state itself, reducing it to nothing but a small block (Rayalseema) and a coastal strip (Coastal Andhra) on the map of the country. In case of UP, MP and Bihar, their names and respective capitals remained the same. In case of Telangana, Andhra Pradesh would cease to exist. And Hyderabad will not be capital of Andhra, but Telangana. In the scheme of states, it's Seemandhra that will be born. Telangana would just acquire the name Telangana.

Monday, August 19, 2013

Analysis: Decoding India's Telangana Conundrum

By Mayurika Reddy / Hyderabad

This week, India's ruling United Progressive Alliance coalition decided to create Telangana - a new state that will be formed out of the existing state of Andhra Pradesh. National and social media have been abuzz with the issue, keeping the country "informed" of parliamentary developments through minute-by-minute live feeds. 

The media frenzy reached a crescendo with the announcement by the central government (led by the Congress party) had endorsed the formation of the state. But why such commotion? The last time new states (three) were carved out of larger states in 2000, there was not such a hue and cry. 

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Are You Ready To Eat Telangana Biryani?

What is common between Hyderabadi Biryani and Telangana? The answer is both simple and complicated. First let's talk about the simple answer. Biryani is cooked by more than one person; it takes a lot of time to cook; it tastes best when served hot and it turns stale in just one day. Similarly, the formation of Telangana too would require more than one political party; it's formation too will take a lot of time; it would taste best if formed immediately and it will take merely one political season to rot its demand.

Now talk about the complicated comparison. With less than six months left for the Assembly and General Elections, almost all political parties in Andhra Pradesh are vying to carve out Telangana pie. But just like the Biryani, all political parties seem to be blissfully unaware of the perfect recipe.

Rice, meat, ghee, oil and garam masala are the common ingredients of Biryani. Similarly, Telangana too would require Congress, TDP, BJP, NTP, TRS, Praja Rajyam and other political parties. For Biryani, one needs to get a defined quantity of each ingredient which should be properly mixed and heated for a defined period. Similarly, Telangana would need a proper consensus among all political parties. Any increase or decrease in any ingredient will spoil Biryani's taste. Similarly, strong opposition or support for Telangana will spoil the taste of Andhra politics.

Just for a little more gyan, let's talk a bit more about Biryani's history. No body knows for sure when the Biryani was cooked first, but it was confined to royal kitchens till independence. Later, it became a permanent item in the menu of all marriage celebrations and also entered the market through hundreds of Irani hotels in Hyderabad. Initially, Irani hotels served only mutton biryani but soon they also introduced chicken biryani. It was followed by Kalyani Biryani, Lal Biryani, Shahi Biryani, Mughlai Biryani, Zafrani Biryani, Kaju-ki-Biryani and a lot of other varieties.

Each variety has a different taste. Even the Mutton Biryani served in two different hotels will taste different. Further, Mutton Biryani prepared by the same chef, will have a different taste when he does it second time. Therefore, it is now an established fact that there is no defined recipe for Biryani and each chef will cook it in his own way. But very few people notice these differences and everyone enjoys whatever is served to them in the name of Biryani.

The demand for creation of Telangana too has a long history. In 1969, the Telangana Praja Samithi launched a mass agitation for Telangana. It also won almost all assembly and Lok Sabha seats in the region in the next elections. But the movement was given an unceremonious burial when the TPS was merged into Congress. For almost three decades, no politician dared to revive the demand for Telangana since such demands were viewed with great suspicion.

After 1994 assembly elections, BJP revived the issue and went to the extent of giving the slogan of "one vote, two states" during 1998 elections. Two years later, K.Chandrasekhar Rao floated Telangana Rashtra Samithi. The demand got political recognition during 2004 elections and TRS was able to win 26 assembly and 5 Lok Sabha seats, of course, with a tie-up with the Congress party. Nearly five years later, now almost all political parties are supporting separate Telangana.

Let's again go back to the comparison. Biryani has no clear definition except for the fact that it is the most favourite food of all Hyderabadis. Likewise, in the present political circumstances, Telangana too has no clear definition, but now it has become the most favourite poll slogan that all parties are trying to adopt. A chef thinks that Biryani with attractive looks and perfect aroma was more important than the recipe. Similarly, for politicians, a bunch of 10 districts and the slogan "Jai Telangana" are important and not the strategy which would ensure its creation.

I think creation of Telangana is not as easy as it is being projected by the political parties. In 2004 elections, both TRS and Congress maintained that if people want Telangana, then they just need to vote for them. People did so. A few days later, TRS chief Chandrasekhar Rao started setting deadlines and after losing full five years, now he believes that Telangana will be a reality after next elections. But being a sub-regional party, it will be impossible for the TRS to get the statehood even if it wins all 109 assembly and 16 Lok Sabha seats of the region.

Officially Congress maintained a strategic silence although some Congress leaders made periodic statements demanding statehood for Telangana in the last five years. There is no clarity as to whether the Congress-led UPA Government will constitute the second States Reorganisation Commission or will it introduce a Telangana resolution in the State Assembly. But political pundits are just speculating that Congress will do either of these to boldly face the next elections. BJP claims that it can form Telangana if voted to power in both the State and the Centre. But BJP knows fully well it cannot form the government in Andhra Pradesh at least after next elections. Recently TDP supremo Chandrababu Naidu joined the Telangana bandwagon and now the Praja Rajyam chief Chiranjeevi also joined in the chorus.

No political party including the Telangana Rashtra Samithi is clear about the roadmap for Telangana. No body is clear as to how a separate state would be carved out of the country's fifth largest state. They don't have any answers for both short-term and long-term questions. Will it be a state consisting of 10-districts? What will happen to Khammam district which partly falls in Telangana & partly Andhra? If the state is bifurcated, then what will happen to the four districts of Rayalaseema? Will Anantapur, Kurnool, Cuddapah and Chittoor be merged with coastal Andhra? Or will the state will be trifurcated by giving statehood to Rayalaseema? How water resources will be shared between the newly created states? Which newly created state will get compensation or more compensation from the Centre -- Andhra or Telangana?

There are hundreds of hotels in Hyderabad that sell Biryani. Despite a major difference in rate, taste and quality, the hotels do not compete with each other. Several hundred tons of Biryani is sold in Hyderabad every day, because the hoteliers know that the only USP to sell this dish is its name. Just supercede anything with "Biryani" and people will buy it and also enjoy it without major complaints.

Similarly, it appears that politicians have started believing that the only USP to win the next elections would be Telangana. Just say "Jai Telangana" or at least don't object to others saying "Jai Telangana" and you will emerge a winner. Going by the present political trend, it can be predicted that Telangana will be the major issue during the next elections. Only the poll outcome will tell whether voters find the party with correct Telangana recipe or one that again ends up making a mish mash out of Telangana in the next elections.

Are You Ready To Eat Telangana Biryani?

What is common between Hyderabadi Biryani and Telangana? The answer is both simple and complicated. First let's talk about the simple answer. Biryani is cooked by more than one person; it takes a lot of time to cook; it tastes best when served hot and it turns stale in just one day. Similarly, the formation of Telangana too would require more than one political party; it's formation too will take a lot of time; it would taste best if formed immediately and it will take merely one political season to rot its demand.



Now talk about the complicated comparison. With less than six months left for the Assembly and General Elections, almost all political parties in Andhra Pradesh are vying to carve out Telangana pie. But just like the Biryani, all political parties seem to be blissfully unaware of the perfect recipe.



Rice, meat, ghee, oil and garam masala are the common ingredients of Biryani. Similarly, Telangana too would require Congress, TDP, BJP, NTP, TRS, Praja Rajyam and other political parties. For Biryani, one needs to get a defined quantity of each ingredient which should be properly mixed and heated for a defined period. Similarly, Telangana would need a proper consensus among all political parties. Any increase or decrease in any ingredient will spoil Biryani's taste. Similarly, strong opposition or support for Telangana will spoil the taste of Andhra politics.



Just for a little more gyan, let's talk a bit more about Biryani's history. No body knows for sure when the Biryani was cooked first, but it was confined to royal kitchens till independence. Later, it became a permanent item in the menu of all marriage celebrations and also entered the market through hundreds of Irani hotels in Hyderabad. Initially, Irani hotels served only mutton biryani but soon they also introduced chicken biryani. It was followed by Kalyani Biryani, Lal Biryani, Shahi Biryani, Mughlai Biryani, Zafrani Biryani, Kaju-ki-Biryani and a lot of other varieties.



Each variety has a different taste. Even the Mutton Biryani served in two different hotels will taste different. Further, Mutton Biryani prepared by the same chef, will have a different taste when he does it second time. Therefore, it is now an established fact that there is no defined recipe for Biryani and each chef will cook it in his own way. But very few people notice these differences and everyone enjoys whatever is served to them in the name of Biryani.



The demand for creation of Telangana too has a long history. In 1969, the Telangana Praja Samithi launched a mass agitation for Telangana. It also won almost all assembly and Lok Sabha seats in the region in the next elections. But the movement was given an unceremonious burial when the TPS was merged into Congress. For almost three decades, no politician dared to revive the demand for Telangana since such demands were viewed with great suspicion.



After 1994 assembly elections, BJP revived the issue and went to the extent of giving the slogan of "one vote, two states" during 1998 elections. Two years later, K.Chandrasekhar Rao floated Telangana Rashtra Samithi. The demand got political recognition during 2004 elections and TRS was able to win 26 assembly and 5 Lok Sabha seats, of course, with a tie-up with the Congress party. Nearly five years later, now almost all political parties are supporting separate Telangana.



Let's again go back to the comparison. Biryani has no clear definition except for the fact that it is the most favourite food of all Hyderabadis. Likewise, in the present political circumstances, Telangana too has no clear definition, but now it has become the most favourite poll slogan that all parties are trying to adopt. A chef thinks that Biryani with attractive looks and perfect aroma was more important than the recipe. Similarly, for politicians, a bunch of 10 districts and the slogan "Jai Telangana" are important and not the strategy which would ensure its creation.



I think creation of Telangana is not as easy as it is being projected by the political parties. In 2004 elections, both TRS and Congress maintained that if people want Telangana, then they just need to vote for them. People did so. A few days later, TRS chief Chandrasekhar Rao started setting deadlines and after losing full five years, now he believes that Telangana will be a reality after next elections. But being a sub-regional party, it will be impossible for the TRS to get the statehood even if it wins all 109 assembly and 16 Lok Sabha seats of the region.



Officially Congress maintained a strategic silence although some Congress leaders made periodic statements demanding statehood for Telangana in the last five years. There is no clarity as to whether the Congress-led UPA Government will constitute the second States Reorganisation Commission or will it introduce a Telangana resolution in the State Assembly. But political pundits are just speculating that Congress will do either of these to boldly face the next elections. BJP claims that it can form Telangana if voted to power in both the State and the Centre. But BJP knows fully well it cannot form the government in Andhra Pradesh at least after next elections. Recently TDP supremo Chandrababu Naidu joined the Telangana bandwagon and now the Praja Rajyam chief Chiranjeevi also joined in the chorus.



No political party including the Telangana Rashtra Samithi is clear about the roadmap for Telangana. No body is clear as to how a separate state would be carved out of the country's fifth largest state. They don't have any answers for both short-term and long-term questions. Will it be a state consisting of 10-districts? What will happen to Khammam district which partly falls in Telangana & partly Andhra? If the state is bifurcated, then what will happen to the four districts of Rayalaseema? Will Anantapur, Kurnool, Cuddapah and Chittoor be merged with coastal Andhra? Or will the state will be trifurcated by giving statehood to Rayalaseema? How water resources will be shared between the newly created states? Which newly created state will get compensation or more compensation from the Centre -- Andhra or Telangana?



There are hundreds of hotels in Hyderabad that sell Biryani. Despite a major difference in rate, taste and quality, the hotels do not compete with each other. Several hundred tons of Biryani is sold in Hyderabad every day, because the hoteliers know that the only USP to sell this dish is its name. Just supercede anything with "Biryani" and people will buy it and also enjoy it without major complaints.



Similarly, it appears that politicians have started believing that the only USP to win the next elections would be Telangana. Just say "Jai Telangana" or at least don't object to others saying "Jai Telangana" and you will emerge a winner. Going by the present political trend, it can be predicted that Telangana will be the major issue during the next elections. Only the poll outcome will tell whether voters find the party with correct Telangana recipe or one that again ends up making a mish mash out of Telangana in the next elections.