Firing salvos at chief minister N Kiran Kumar Reddy and PCC chief Botcha Satyanarayana, Union tribal affairs minister V Kishore Chandra Deo, who is also from Seemandhra, shot off an eight-page letter to AK Antony committee over bifurcation of AP.
The Union minister alleged that Ghulam Nabi Azad had taken the T-decision only after consulting a few Telangana leaders and Botcha, “who wants to become CM of the state post-bifurcation”.
Kishore Chandra Deo requested his party high command to trifurcate AP into Telangana, Andhra and Rayalaseema, instead of bifurcating it. He also suggested Visakhapatnam as the suitable place for setting up capital of Andhra state.
The following is the full text of Deo’s letter:
CWC decision is irrevocable
The Congress Working Committee has in all its wisdom taken a final decision on the formation of Telangana state. Having been actively associated with the Congress for over four decades, I am fully aware that this decision is irreversible. It is, however, necessary to take stock of the situation in its proper perspective in order to find a final and acceptable solution. As this issue got procrastinated over a long period of time, people from both the sides were eager that an early decision should be taken.
Salvos at Azad
But, unfortunately the feeling among the people persists that the then AICC incharge of AP affairs had a pre-determined mind and went about doing things in a pre-planned manner. This apprehension of the people got embedded in their minds because his consultations involved a few selective leaders from Telangana and the PCC president.
The MPs and Union ministers from Andhra and Rayalaseema went around from pillar to post meeting with different leaders of the party to express their views and to present certain facts, but these were futile exercises which were ultimately of no avail. The people of AP are, however, of the impression that a hasty decision was taken keeping in view only results of ensuing elections which is also based on purely speculative and theoretical assessments.
My suggestions fell on deaf ears
About two years ago, I had suggested that Hyderabad should be made a Union Territory with partial statehood if the Telangana demand had to be conceded. But, there was no response whatsoever and this suggestion was not even considered by anyone from either side. About six months later, I had made yet another suggestion that an economic package should be given for the development of backward regions of Telangana, and that a ‘Telangana Development Council’ should be formed, and that the chairman should be given Cabinet rank in the state. Along with this, I had also suggested that for the remaining period up to mid-2014, both posts of CM and PCC chief should be given to leaders from T-region in order to preserve the integrity of the state. There was no response even to this suggestion of mine and the two leaders from Andhra were not in a position to sacrifice their positions for a few months even for the sake of an integrated state.
Unfair for Kiran and Botcha
In the Congress scheme of things, the highest decision making body is the CWC. Whenever this issue was discussed in the CWC or in the party core committee, it was only CM and the PCC chief who were consulted. This practice was in keeping with the convention and the precedent that the Congress had always followed. The feeling among the people is, however, that one of them was keen that the state be divided as he hoped that such a decision will enable him to achieve his life’s ambition of becoming CM of a divided state. While, the other believed that his position would be secured till 2014 only by prolonging the T-impasse. People strongly feel that it is these selfish interests of both the heads of the government and the party in the state respectively that have led us to this piquant situation.
It is unfair and mischievous that both the CM and the PCC chief are openly accusing the MPs and Union ministers from Andhra and Rayalaseema in order to cover up their selfish and ulterior motives. Most unfortunate are allegations and the public perception that both these leaders are sponsoring and encouraging violent agitations with a feeling of injured guilt.
They are engineering assault on the elected representatives of people.
KCR provoked SeemandhraS
The statement of TRS chief KCR that people from Rayalaseema and Andhra, especially government employees, should quit Telangana has created a feeling of insecurity and terror among the people of Seema-andhra, who including those who have been domiciled in Telangana for several years. This kind of provocative statements and threats by some Telangana leaders only added fuel to the fire. Such statements have enraged the people of Seema-Andhra.
It is relevant to mention at this juncture that the people, who are domiciled in Hyderabad for several decades and generations were never consulted nor were their views were taken into consideration as stakeholders who have lived in this region since time immemorial.
Trifurcation is the best solution
The most crucial and contentious decision will be the location of the new capital. Already there are voices from Rayalaseema claiming that the capital should be located in that region. There are also sections of people within Rayalaseema who want to be partly or wholly included their region in the proposed Telangana state.
AP at present has three distinctive regions which are geographically and culturally divided as Telangana, Rayalaseema and Andhra.
Hence, I am of the firm opinion that none of these three regions should be sub-divided. It has to be ensured that the demands and tensions arising from such situations do not lead to escalated violence and bloodbaths. Such situations can be avoided only by taking cognizance of the prevailing realities.
I am of the considered view that the only solution in the present situation is to trifurcate the state and grant a separate statehood for Rayalaseema also. This will assuage the feelings of all three regions and is the only permanent solution.
Telangana region has 17 Lok Sabha seats and of the remaining 25 seats, 17 Lok Sabha seats are located in Andhra and 8 Lok Sabha seats are in Rayalaseema. Such a division will bring the parity in the number of Parliament seats that are there in Telagnana and Andhra. Rayalaseema with 8 Lok Sabha seats will be a larger state than Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Tripura, Sikkim, Nagaland, Meghalyaya, Arunachal Pradesh, Mizoram, Pondicherry and Goa.
VIZAG should be Andhra capital
As far as Andhra region is concerned, Visakhapatnam is the most ideal and suitable location for the capital. It is the second city of AP and already has an inbuilt infrastructure apart from international airport, the natural harbour and various other facilities, which have been developed over the years. Land is available around the city and can be acquired for the purpose of building a new capital. I am of the view that the only permanent solution to the present crisis is to adopt the above mentioned suggestions in toto with an emphasis on the ‘Trifurcation of the State’ and an early announcement in this regard.