Dharna for separate Telangana at Jantar Mantar, Delhi on 29 & 30 April 2013 మే 5, 2013Posted by M Bharath Bhushan in Congress, elections, Identity, regionalism, Telangana, TRS.
Mainstream, Vol LI, No 20, May 4, 2013
Support Telangana State Demand
Leader and activists of all parties advocating a separate State of Telangana held a two-day dharna at New Delhi’s Jantar Mantar on April 29 and 30, 2013 during the Parliament session to reiterate their demand for a Telangana State. The following document was distributed at the dharna. It is a statement from the Telangana Joint Action Committee. It is being reproduced here for the benefit of our readers.
The Telangana people are struggling for a separate State for this region for about the 57 years to get their judicious share of political power and resources for economic growth and prosperity. Today, the entire Telangana population, regardless of their political, social and economic differences, would like to live with self-respect and prosper in their own State. The demand is accepted as judicious by all the political parties of the State. In the 2009 elections, except the CPM, all other political parties—the TDP, CPI and Congress—assured a separate State to the people of the region. However, the promise has not been fulfilled.
The situation changed after the massive upsurge of people during the indefinite fast by Sri K. Chandrasekhar Rao in 2009. Considering the ground realities and political situation, the Government of India, which has the responsibility to uphold the Constitution and respect the aspirations of the people, has taken a clear decision to establish the Telangana State. The announcement for initiating the process of establishing a Telangana State was made by the then Hon’ble Union Home Minister, P. Chidambaram, on December 9 and was reiterated on the floor of Parliament, the highest decision-making body empowered to take such decisions.
After that day the Telangana people had nothing to rejoice for; and they had to wait for years for the process to begin. It is surprising, rather shocking, that in India, the largest democracy in the world, a small group of financial and political lobbyists from the Andhra region could be so powerful as to stop a highly democratic process from its initiation. However, the common people of the Andhra region are not against the division of the State. A decision announced three years ago is still kept suspended in the air, and the people of Telangana are still continuing their struggle. Since the beginning of 2011 we launched four major agitations—non-cooperation movement, a million strong march to Hyderabad, all-peoples struggle (sakalajanula samme) and Chalo Hyderabad. The government has not been moved by any of them.
The Congress Party, which is leading the current government at the Centre, has indulged in giving deadlines after deadlines for taking a decision. This has been going on for the last ten years. In this connection, we would like to remind you of the following facts:
a. The Congress Party announced and supported the cause of Telangana during the 2004 elections. It had contested the elections along with the TRS with a clear understanding that, if the Congress wins, the State will be formed soon after the elections; and, both at the Centre and in the State, the Congress Party formed its governments.
b. The UPA-I had clearly mentioned about the Telangana State as a part of the Common Minimum Programme.
c. The formation of the Telangana State was part of the Presidential speech.
d. The government’s decision was announced in Parliament.
e. The all party meeting held on December 27, 2012 resolved in favour of a separate State for the Telangana region. At the meeting the Home Minister stated that a decision on the issue would be announced within one month. These actions and the recurring deadlines seriously undermine the very functioning of democracy.
This delay in fulfilling the promise made to the Telangana people has been responsible for the humiliation of the people of this region and also led to many a suicide out of sheer distress. Till now more than 1000 youth of Telangana have died in desperation. Some of them died in public in front of the media by setting them-selves on fire for not implementing the decision. Most of them left behind detailed suicide notes, clearly blaming the government and naming some political leaders. We feel these suicides are a direct consequence of the failure of the democratic process. This is not good for India, which claims itself as the largest democracy in the world.
Establishing the Telangana State, as announced on the floor of Parliament, is the only choice for a peaceful and democratic functioning and it would enhance the dignity of the government and the Congress Party. The State of AP is already a non-existent phenomenon. The political parties are vertically split and the society has got divided into two. In any democracy it is difficult to ignore the will of the people. The Government of India delayed this process and its terrible cost is evident—human loss, economic damage and loss of credibility for the political decision-making process. This is not the feature of good governance and would bear consequences in the long run too for the nation.
To impress upon the Union Government to deliver a decision on the
Telangana issue and to realise the promise made on December 9, 2009, we are staging a dharna in Delhi at Jantar Mantar on April 29 and 30, 2013. We request you to extend full support to the just cause, a State of their own, for which the people of Telangana have been fighting for decades now.
Jai Telangana… Jai Jai Telangana!