Two days after an engineering student in Warangal torched himself for Telangana, the TRS leadership has decided to cool down the separate state movement lest it trigger another wave of student suicides.
Instead, the TRS state executive, which met Wednesday, decided to shift its emphasis to building the party from the grossroots up, the lack of strength at which level was shown up in the cooperative society elections this week. Another decision was to complete the party elections by the end of the March. The shift of emphasis from agitational to purely political activities comes in the context of suspicions in the TRS that the UPA government is getting ready for the next election.
This was an about-turn of sorts. Just the day before, the TRS’s affiliate, the TJAC, had gushed about the protest programmes it would undertake. TRS leaders too had declared that they would disrupt Parliament and Assembly proceedings if no decision was taken on statehood. The TRS had declared that they would participate with the TJAC in a Chalo Assembly programme in the third week of March.
Despite all that talk, the TRS steering body did not discuss the TJAC protests. In fact, it decided to urge the TJAC leadership to postpone the date of its blockade of the Vijayawada highway, scheduled for March 2.
The two-hour state executive meeting was presided over by party boss K Chandrasekhar Rao and attended by elected reps and district committee leaders.
The thinking within the TRS is that the Telangana knot will be unravelled only after the elections. Therefore the changed accent on politics rather than agitations.
Bereft of agitational rhetoric, the proceedings were rather pedestrian. However, pink panther KCR managed to enliven the show by turning his ire upon some grumbling party leaders. “Without having a proper structure, how can we achieve our political goals,’’ he fumed. “How can we face challenges like this?’’ So the next few weeks are likely to see the TRS in a navel-gazing mode as it attends to party matters. After the party polls by the end of March, the panther may prowl all Telangana mandals, something he has not done in a while.