Kurnool: While Telangana is yet to stop its celebrations, in neighbouring Rayalaseema, the protests continue. Having lost the fight for a united Andhra Pradesh, locals and political leaders are now focusing on securing Kurnool as the capital for the new state – comprising Rayalaseema and Coastal Andhra.
“Kurnool was the erstwhile capital of Andhra state. It is only fair we get that status back, else we will want a separate Rayalaseema state,” Byreddy Rajashekhar Reddy, the founder of the Rayalaseema Parirakshana Samithi (RPS), said.
The demand has found support in various cross sections of society. 65-year-old teacher Leela Reddy, until recently, campaigned vociferously for a united state. But with the bifurcation now done, her demand is for prioritized development.
With frequent dharnas and protests hampering business, builders and contractors now hope the end of political uncertainty will elevate dismal real estate prices.
Another major concern is the lack of educational infrastructure in the Seemandhra region and with Hyderabad and its national universities now in Telangana state, students too are apprehensive.
While a special category status may seem like a ray of hope, students and professors hope the fund allocation will be taken up on war footing to address the growing sense of loss among residents.
Kurnool is the bordering district with the new state of Telanagana. Seen largely as a bed of dry land, its backward status reflects much of Rayalaseema region’s prime concern post bifurcation. How soon will development actually happen on ground? The question is – will Seemanadhra and Telangana make bitter neighbours or can appropriate funds and opportunities here help mend strained ties?