The slew of statements issued by AICC general secretary Digvijay Singh on Telangana appears to have left the Congress rank and file in both regions of Andhra Pradesh bewildered.
During his visit to the city on Monday-Tuesday, Mr. Digvijay Singh made open-ended statements, leaving the partymen to draw their own inferences about the Congress high command’s mind on separate Telangana. He said the process for carving out Telangana as announced by then Home Minister P. Chidambaram in December 2009 had indeed begun.
At the same time, he directed Chief Minister N. Kiran Kumar Reddy and PCC president Botcha Satyanarayana to prepare roadmaps figuring out the impact on the party if a decision was taken either way. The inclusion of Deputy Chief Minister C. Damodar Rajanarsimha came after pressure from the Telangana leaders who claimed the Chief Minister and Mr. Satyanarayana were “interested parties’’ in the united State.
During the series of meetings he held with leaders from Telangana as well as Seemandhra regions, the senior Congress leader made it clear that a decision would be taken on Telangana very soon, without indicating which way it would go but sternly telling everyone that they would have to fall in line.
Partymen did not fail to notice the different nuances in his statements from different platforms. At the PCC office-bearers’ meeting in the morning, he remarked that bifurcation was a painful exercise. There appeared to be a change in his tone at his press conference in the evening after a large delegation of Seemandhra leaders submitted a memorandum to him. He held forth about the complications involved in division of the assets and re-deployment of staff after bifurcation. Before leaving for Bangalore on Tuesday morning, he told some Seemandhra Congress leaders that the high command would have no objection if they held regional meetings in support of unification. On reaching Bangalore, Mr. Digvijay said that the Centre was dealing with the situation with an open mind but made a significant observation that bifurcation of the State would benefit the Congress in both the regions. This brought cheer to those in the Telangana camp once again.