As the Telangana March on September 30 is looming nearer, the national capital is becoming a battleground for Congress leaders from the Telangana and Andhra-Rayalaseema regions to fire salvos on each other.
They are vying with each other to visit Delhi to meet the party high command and get an assurance in accordance with their respective demand. Party MPs from Andhra and Rayalaseema regions - Kavuri Sambasiva Rao, Lagadapati Rajagopal, JD Seelam and Ananta Venkatarami Reddy - reached Delhi and started formulating strategies to persuade the AICC top brass to make an announcement that Andhra Pradesh would not be bifurcated. They met at the residence of Kavuri in Delhi on Monday. Primary education minister and AP Congress Legislators' Forum convener Sake Sailajanath also attended the meeting.
Kavuri said that they decided to convey the aspirations of the of their regions to the AICC top brass once again as Telangana leaders were trying every means to exert pressure on the Congress high command to accord statehood.
Minor irrigation minister TG Venkatesh said in Hyderabad that all the legislators from Andhra-Rayalaseema would go to Delhi in the first week of October to meet high command leaders. "We will ask our party leadership to keep Andhra Pradesh state as it is and seek financial package for the development of backward regions of the state," he said. The Congress high command would clarify its stance on Telangana only six months before the 2014 general election, he said.
Congress MPs from the Telangana region also reached Delhi on Monday to persuade the party high command to make an announcement agreeing to form a separate state.
"The Telangana agitation is spontaneous but the Seemandhra agitation is sponsored by vested interests. Therefore, we decided to meet the party high command once again and request it to accord statehood to our region immediately," said M Jagannadham, Madhu Yashki Goud and G Vivekanand, all MPs, in Hyderabad before leaving for Delhi.
Wondering why Kavuri, Lagadapati and Sailajanath were trying to provoke Telangana people with their meetings, they said, "By questioning the party's promise on the Telagnana issue, which was included in the Congress manifesto for the 2004 polls, Seemandhra leaders are violating the party discipline."
As the high command had been holding consultations with TRS chief K Chandrasekhar Rao, they too wanted to be present in Delhi and air their views, the Telangana Congress MPs said.
Congress ministers and legislators from Telangana region, who recently sent letters to AICC chief Sonia Gandhi requesting her to take an immediate decision on separate state, also sought an appointment with her.