No Telangana State, Yes TRC- Congress మార్చి 6, 2011Posted by M Bharath Bhushan in agitation, Andhra, bandh, Congress, CPI, drama, fast, Hyderabad, Identity, Jai Andhra, Mulki, politics, Rayalaseema, regionalism, Settler, Sonia, TDP, TRS.
Tags: Telangana Regional Council
No Telangana for now
Jinka Nagaraju, TNN, March 6, 2011
HYDERABAD: Though this may give a fillip to the Telangana agitations, the UPA government is veering around to the view that a new state at this juncture is a strict no-no. The favoured opinion is to accept the sixth option formulated by the Srikrishna Committee, which is to maintain status quo while empowering the Telangana region by creating a Telangana Regional Council.
Highly-placed sources told STOI that an announcement to this effect might be made after Parliament passes the finance Bill. But before any announcement, home minister P Chidambaram will hold another all-party meeting with the 8 political parties concerned to forge a consensus on this option, the sources revealed.
“The UPA government is inclined to go with the sixth option suggested by the Srikrishna Committee as it expects major opposition only from the TRS. However, the steps needed to counter a possible agitation by the pro-Telangana parties including the TRS, BJP and CPI in the event of the Centre going with the sixth option is still being worked out,” the sources added.
It is understood that chief minister Kiran Kumar Reddy visited New Delhi last week to discuss this issue. “In the course of the meetings, Kiran Kumar told Congress president Sonia Gandhi and other big wigs in the government and the party that a categorical announcement should be deferred at least until the completion of the budget session of the state assembly. “Otherwise there were chances of the state government getting derailed,” sources quoted Kiran as telling Sonia.
The Srikrishna panel had suggested in its report that the Telangana Regional Council should be headed by an MLA from the region enjoying the rank and status of a cabinet minister in the state government. It will be constitutionally provided with funds and will have its own secretariat. The membership of the council should be restricted to MLAs/MLCs and the number would depend on the number of subjects it is handling and its work load.
The separate state votaries may argue that such councils are not of much use as they had existed earlier. One Telangana Regional Council functioned from 1958 to 1969 and in 2008, YSR constituted the Telangana Regional Development Board, both of which did not help in the development of the region. The Srikrishna panel is of the view that the council proposed by it would be more effective as it would be enabled constitutionally and armed with funds.
According to sources, the top bosses of the UPA government discussed the option of going with the fifth option as well, which the Srikrishna Committee had graded as second-best. This option, of dividing the state into Telangana and Seema-Andhra with Hyderabad as the former’s capital and new capital suggested for the latter region, is fraught with too many problems such as huge expenditure required for the construction of a new capital, backlash in the Seema-Andhra region as well as regional disputes over sharing of river waters and other natural assets.
The Centre, which is facing several demands for smaller states, is said to have concurred with the view that the sixth option would be useful in addressing regional aspirations elsewhere in the country as well.