In the highly polarised political landscape of Andhra Pradesh, there is one unifying factor—Telangana. With preparations for state polls in full swing, all political parties in the Telangana region are now chanting “separate state” mantra with renewed vigour, creating a crisis of choice for the voters. From separatist party Telangana Rashtra Samiti (TRS) to the Congress, every party in the state, except the CPI(M), is trying to win the hearts of Telangana people with “a separate state” slogan.
Telangana issue has once again come centre stage with the recent three-day fast by BJP state president G Kishan Reddy in Delhi. With BJP strongman L K Advani and Leader of Opposition in the Lok Sabha Sushma Swaraj turning up at the deeksha, the separatist issue is picking up steam.
Baffled by the BJP’s aggressive attitude, the TDP, criticised by Telangana votaries as a party which opposes state bifurcation, has also started chanting the Telangana mantra. TDP chief N Chandrababu Naidu categorically stated that he would give more clarity on his party’s stance on the Telangana issue soon. Naidu has not missed an opportunity to point out that he has never opposed Telangana.
The old phantoms are revisiting the Congress with Seemandhra leaders flexing their muscles as the Telangana leaders begin upping the ante after months of slow burn. Vijayawada MP Lagadapati Rajagopal said: “(Home Minister) Shinde’s statement has made it clear that there is no question of formation of Telangana state.”
AICC Andhra Pradesh affairs incharge Ghulam Nabi Azad noticed the growing divide between the leaders of the two regions, during his recent visit to Hyderabad. He remained a mute spectator when Telangana MP G Vivekanand and Seemandhra’s Lagadapati Rajagopal had heated exchanges. Even then, ministers from Telangana region are planning to visit Delhi to meet the AICC president Sonia Gandhi.
Meanwhile, TRS chief K Chandrasekhar Rao, has been camping in the national capital for the past few days and holding hectic parleys with the AICC top brass over the Telangana issue. Back home, the Telangana Political Joint Action Committee headed by Prof M Kodandaram put the Telangana pot on boil with their “Telangana March” on September 30.
Not to be outdone in the T-race, even the CPI also recently conducted “Telangana Praja Poru Yatra” across Telangana region to mount pressure on the Centre over separate state issue.
-- Sunday Standard