Opposition parties in Andhra Pradesh today hit out at the Congress for dilly-dallying on the contentious Telangana issue and betraying people of the region on the statehood issue.

All of them demanded that the Central government take a decision on the Telangana issue without any further delay and restore normalcy in the state.

Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen, considered an ally of the ruling party, was most strident in its criticism of the Congress and alleged that the Centre’s indifference on the statehood issue was causing “irreparable damage” to the state’s economy.

“Both the government and the private sectors suffered a loss of Rs. 30,000 crore in the last two years because of the agitation for a separate state. Why is the Centre still procrastinating,” MIM floor leader Akbaruddin Owaisi questioned, during the course of the debate on the no-confidence motion against the Kiran Kumar Reddy government.

Andhra Pradesh is losing heavily as industries are shifting base to Tamil Nadu and other states, he said.

“The Telangana Rashtra Samiti has been fighting for a separate state for many years now. I don’t know how long it will have to fight,” Mr. Akbaruddin said.

“It is high time the Government of India took a decision on the Telangana issue. The UPA government should bring the issue to a close,” Mr. Akbaruddin said, even as he maintained that his party was totally in favour of a unified state of Andhra Pradesh.

Leader of Opposition and TDP president N. Chandrababu Naidu said it was the Central government’s responsibility to find a solution to the vexatious statehood issue.

“The Congress is solely responsible for the instability and uncertainty in the state. Hence, it is its responsibility to set things in order,” Mr. Naidu said, adding that his party had already made its stand very clear on the issue.

TRS floor leader Etela Rajender lashed out at the Congress over its “double-speak” on the Telangana issue.

“It is talking in one voice when it is in power and in a different tone when in opposition. The Congress promised to resolve the statehood issue through the Pranab Mukherjee Committee but it failed to do anything in the last seven years. People of Telangana will punish the Congress appropriately in the 2014 elections,” he added.

Mr. Rajender was also critical of the TDP for failing to keep its word on the statehood demand.

The Communist Party of India leader G. Mallesh also blamed the Congress for the current imbroglio in the state over the Telangana issue.