It’s time for yet another round of pressure politics on the vexed issue of a separate statehood for Telangana.
The dithering and postponing of a decision (this time self-imposed) once again by the Centre has raised the tempers and brought up differences within and among the main politics parties — Congress (I) and to an extent the Telugu Desam in Andhra Pradesh and the Telangana Rastra Samithi.
The Congress (I) has pushed itself into the throes of another impending crisis. After the all-party meeting on December 28, Union Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde announced that a decision would be taken in a month. There was also no need for any further all-party meetings, he declared to the media.
The finality in the announcement raised high hopes of a forward movement on the issue, which has got caught in a state of flux after the December 9, 2009 statement by then Union Home Minister, P. Chidambaram and subsequent step back on December 23.
With the promised month lapsing on January 28 and the Congress (I) incharge of Andhra Pradesh aaffairs Ghulam Nabi Azad and Sushil Kumar Shinde stating that more discussions and time were needed, the pro-Telangana groups — TRS, T-Congress (I) leaders are once again up in arms.
Leaders of both the Telangana region and coastal Andhra are raising the pitch on their stated positions which are for division and unified State. Eight of the Congress (I) MP’s from Telangana, have threatened to quit today.
After a meeting at the residence of senior leader and former member of the Congress Working Committee, and now Rajya Sabha MP, K. Keshav Rao, these MPs said they will head for New Delhi tomorrow to exert more pressure and convince the Party High Command and UPA Government to announce separate Telangana.
The MPs have also resolved to submit their resignations to the Party President, Sonia Gandhi. Among those who attended were Ponnam Prabhakar, G. Sudhakar Reddy, Madhu Goud Yaski, G. Vivek, G. Rajaiah, Mandha Jagannadham and Komatireddy Rajagopal Reddy.
Meanwhile, the bandh call given by the Osmania University, Joint Action Committee today evoked very little response in Hyderabad. The TRS Chief K. Chandrasekhara Rao made a strong speech, peppered with provocative comments on the State Congress (I), leaders and elected representatives, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh as well as Nehru, Indira Gandhi and Sonia Gandhi, which have attracted the ire of the Congress leaders and portend a war of words.
United Andhra Pradesh
In Chittoor, pro-united Andhra groups took out a big protest rally, while in Tirupati educational institutions remained closed.
After more than a week of hectic lobbying by more than 40 legislators and several MPs from the coastal and Rayalseema regions, protagonists of a united State, organised a big meeting in Rajahmundry under the leadership of Undavalli Arun Kumar, Congress MP.
In the light of reports that more discussions were necessary with leaders of the three regions in the near future, it is clear that another dose of protests, bandhs and politicking will ride the uncertainty that is reigning in Andhra Pradesh in the coming weeks