Stepping up their efforts to form a separate Telangana, ruling Congress leaders from the region today said they were prepared to quit their posts for the cause and also threatened to go on a “Gandhian fast” if police cases against students were not withdrawn forthwith.

“If the government withdraws the police cases against students (from the region) by evening, it is fine. Otherwise, Telangana Congress MPs would go on fast from tomorrow. It is a Gandhian fast,” Congress Rajya Sabha member K Keshav Rao told reporters in Hyderabad after a meeting.

Andhra Pradesh ministers from Telangana, who attended the meeting, will speak to the Chief Minister about withdrawal of police cases against pro-statehood students, he said.

The Congress MPs, ministers, MLAs and other leaders from the region held a meeting today to chalk out their future course of action as the Centre-appointed Srikrishna Committee is scheduled to submit its report on the statehood issue by the end of this month.

Expressing the hope that the Centre would agree for a Telangana state, Mr. Rao said all Congress public representatives are ready to quit their posts in support of the demand.

“We are fully confident that Telangana statehood will be realised. Since there is no compromise on this issue, all the MLAs, MPs and even MLCs will submit their resignations (if the goal is not realised).”

Withdrawal of police cases against students and other Telangana supporters, who took part in the recent (rpt) recent agitations, is a demand that has been voiced by ruling Congress, TDP, TRS, and all other Telangana outfits.

Union Home Minister P Chidambaram had last year announced that the police cases against the students will be withdrawn in due course of time.

Political leaders from Telangana and other separate statehood supporters demand that the government should withdraw the cases as announced by the Home Minister.

During the just-concluded session of the Assembly, the State government had announced withdrawal of only minor cases against the students.