With the Centre getting ready to take a decision on Telangana, the forces from Seemandhra region are active in Delhi to ensure that it would not go in favour of division of the state.
They have prepared a “secret document” on the adverse impact of a division on the Congress and the benefits of a status quo. The “secret document” is understood to have reached party chief Sonia Gandhi along with the representations that Seemandhra leaders are making to the party leadership against bifurcation.
The document warns of extreme steps by MLAs and MPs from Seemandhra if a division is thrust on them, citing the aftermath of the Dec 9, 2009 statement on Telangana by then Union home minister P Chidambaram.
The document argues that if the state remains undivided, the Congress will become strong in more than 250 to 270 Assembly constituencies out of 294 and in 32 to 38 Lok Sabha seats out of 42.
Telangana sentiment is strong only in about 50 Assembly and 10 Lok Sabha constituencies. The Congress will not be able to get all these 10 Lok Sabha seats because it will have to compete with TRS, BJP, TDP and YSR Congress, in the event of division of the state. Further, it will put the Congress at a disadvantage in the rest of the 250 Assembly segments in all the three regions of the state.
Focal points of the argument against bifurcation:
* After 1969 and 1972 Telangana and Andhra movements, then Prime Minister Indira Gandhi firmly ruled in favour of United AP. In the subsequent 1973 and 1978 elections, the Congress won with a thumping majority.
* Parts of Khammam, Nalgonda, Mahbubnagar and Medak are lukewarm to T sentiment. Hyderabad and Rangareddy districts which have 28 seats have no strong T sentiment.
* After Sakalajanula Samme, the T movement has become less intense and is only being raised by political leaders.
* Alternative ways of resolving the issue might encounter only token opposition by T-protagonists. General public may not oppose it.
* Once Cong high command makes it clear that it is not willing to concede the demand, most of the Cong leaders will fall in line although they might resist initially.
* The TRS will have to agree to second SRC because it signed an agreement with the Congress endorsing the resolution in its 2004 manifesto for SRC. This was a resolution made by the CWC in 2001.
* If the Centre, in the absence of an Assembly resolution, tries to divide AP, then there will be a severe resistance in Parliament by the MPs favouring united AP.
* Even BJP, which is supporting the formation of Telangana, will speak in different tone if the bill is brought before Parliament without the state Assembly resolution when they see MPs blocking the bill in Parliament. They would accuse the Union government that it has failed to get a resolution from the state Assembly and they will attribute motives to the Centre that it is going against the federal spirit.
* The Dec 28 all-party meeting clearly establishes that there is no consensus among the parties within the parties, within regions and hence division of AP as per the UPA’s policy in the absence of consensus, should not be allowed.
* Srikrishna Committee in its report has stated that Rayalaseema is the most backward region and, in fact, after 1956 Telangana has developed much more than the other regions. Even if one looks at the per capita income of Telangana, it is much more than Andhra and Rayalaseema regions.
* The separatists’ slogan of under-development has been blunted by Srikrishna report. Telangana people have also realised this, hence the reduced sentiment in favour of division.