Seemandhra MPs get ready with counter moves
By Express News Service | Published: 07th December 2012 09:40 AM |
While Congress MPs from Telangana are elated by the Centre’s decision to hold an all-party meeting on the separate state issue, their counterparts from Seemandhra are gearing up to scuttle any move towards bifurcation of the state. MPs and MLAs of the ruling party from Seemandhra are planning Delhi visits to stymie the moves of their Telangana counterparts.
As usual, Vijayawada MP Lagadapati Rajgopal has taken the lead in lobbying for Samaikyandhra, calling on Union home minister Sushilkumar Shinde in Delhi on Thursday. Though he did not divulge what transpired in the meeting, sources said he wanted to know the Centre’s intentions in calling the meeting.
Even though Telangana MPs in the Congress say their party now supports bifurcation, Lagadapati’s contention is that the Congress’s highest decision-making body, the Congress Working Committee (CWC) has earlier favoured setting up a second States Reorganisation Commission (SRC) to look into demands for new states and that’s where it stands.
Joining the chorus with Lagadapti, AP Congress Legislators Forum convener and minister Sake Sailajanath said Congress leaders from Seemandhra would intensify their lobbying. Talking to reporters in Anantapur, he exuded confidence that the high command would not divide the state since any such move would harm the interests of Andhra Pradesh and India. Sailajanath said Seemandhra elected reps will request the Congress leadership to send two representatives, one from Telangana and one from Seemandhra, to the proposed all-party meeting to assess view from either side of the divide.
Another staunch integrationist, Gade Venkata Reddy said the Congress has never promised statehood for Telangana and a second SRC remains the party’s stance.
Interestingly, Eluru MP Kavuri Sambasiva Rao, who earlier led the United Andhra movement in the Congress, is maintaining a low profile this time although he met Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Shinde and parliamentary affairs minister Kamal Nath separately in Delhi on Thursday.
When reporters sought his opinion on the proposed all-party meeting, he said, “No comment. I have expressed my stance on the issue several times. I will speak on these issues in detail in January.”
Health minister D L Ravindra Reddy sounded confident that the Congress high command would settle the Telangana issue by the end of this month.
On the other hand, ministers from Telangana Ponnala Lakshmaiah and B Saraiah, and MPs Ponnam Prabhakar and Madhu Yaskhi Goud called upon their counterparts in Seemandhra not to create any hurdles to the formation of Telangana state, a long-cherished dream of about 4.5 crore people.