‘It will be a historic blunder if Rayala-Telangana is created’
Continuing his defiance of the Congress leadership by insisting on keeping Andhra Pradesh united, Chief Minister N. Kiran Kumar Reddy has warned that Maoist insurgency, terrorism and communal tension will become major concerns for the State and the country if the State is divided.
It would harm both regions and the alternative to bifurcation was giving a handsome package of say Rs.1 lakh crore to Telangana.
Bifurcation would cause more harm to the interests of Telangana than Seemandhra, he said at a press conference after his meeting with the Group of Ministers in New Delhi on Monday.
When his opinion was sought by the GoM on including Kurnool and Anantapur in Telangana, Mr. Reddy is reported to have told the Union Ministers, “You have already committed a mistake by deciding to divide the State. It will be a historic blunder if you create Rayala-Telangana.”
Contrary to speculation that Mr. Reddy’s meeting with the Ministers would end up in a showdown with the Congress leadership, nothing of that sort happened.
After his spirited 90-minute-long presentation, Union Minister Veerappa Moily said Mr. Reddy’s views represented his own opinion on bifurcation.
Mr. Reddy asked the Ministers to recall the concern expressed by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh from various fora that Naxalism posed the biggest threat to the country.
If AP was bifurcated, both Telangana and Seemandhra would be the worst sufferers.
Although Naxalite activity had been curbed to a large extent from 2006 onwards, the police establishment would become weak after bifurcation.
“With a weak Government in place and the police strength reduced considerably, it will be difficult to control Naxalite activity,” he said.
Explaining the links between the top Maoist leadership and Andhra Pradesh, Mr. Reddy said 11 out of 17 central committee members hailed from the State.
They included nine from Telangana and two from Andhra region.
‘Increase police strength’
Talking about terrorism, he said for some time now Hyderabad had been facing terror attacks. He pointed out that after Jammu & Kashmir, Andhra Pradesh was being targeted, according to literature recovered by security agencies and the police strength has to go up by at least 40 per cent in the two States.
To a question that his presentation did not have the State Cabinet’s approval, Mr. Reddy said he was called to the GoM as the Chief Minister. “I need no Cabinet approval.
As CM and as a person running the State, who knows the ground realities with authority, these are the problems that need to be addressed,” he said.
‘Assembly will be convened in December’
Reiterating his demand that the Centre reconsider its decision to bifurcate, he said the Assembly had to be anyway convened would be convened in December and the bifurcation issue would be discussed threadbare during that time.