Seemandhra and Telangana Ministers to meet informally on Sept. 19 to thrash out issues on division of State

In a bid to find common ground on some crucial issues relating to State’s bifurcation, Ministers from Seemandhra region and their Telangana counterparts will meet here on September 19, a day ahead of the Cabinet meeting, to find a way forward.

Law Minister Erasu Pratap took the initiative to break the ice with his Cabinet colleagues from Telangana. With no move from the Congress party’s central leadership or the State party functionaries, Mr. Reddy feels that the continuing impasse would lead to more complications. The need to bring together Seemandhra and Telangana Ministers for building a consensus on some of the crucial issues reportedly cropped up during a meeting the Chief Minister N. kiran Kumar Reddy had with Ministers from both sides earlier this week.

Sources said the Law Minister was hopeful that Minister for Ports and Infrastructure Ganta Srinivasa Rao and Revenue Minister N. Raghuveera Reddy would join him in the parleys. From the Telangana side, names of D.K.Aruna, N.Uttam Kumar Reddy and D.Sridhar Babu are doing the rounds. Major Irrigation Minister P.Sudarshan Reddy might be invited to attend the meeting as the issue of sharing of river water could crop up during the deliberations.

Mr. Pratap Reddy informally told reporters on Friday that such an initiative was necessary to break the impasse. “It is 45 days since the announcement on bifurcation was made. I feel that the impasse should not continue further. Both sides have their own reservations and concerns on bifurcation. Let us all sit down and thrash out the issues,” he said.

The Minister said he represented Srisailam constituency in Kurnool district whose survival was dependant on Srisailam irrigation project. “The project will become a bone of contention for both sides as issues linked to sharing of water and power generation can not be addressed overnight. Similarly, we can sit down and discuss about the fate of Hyderabad and the safety of those settled here,” he said.