The Congress high command is inclined to give a special economic and political package for the region to put an end to the vexatious issue.

Congress leaders from Telangana on Wednesday were up in arms against the move reportedly being considered by the Centre to announce a special package for development of the region.

These Congress leaders held a meeting only on Tuesday to finalise an action plan to put pressure on the Congress high command to announce its decision on the statehood issue. They emphatically rejected the idea of giving a package, saying that it was too late and would only spell the doom for the party in the region.

Panchayat Raj Minister K.Jana Reddy, who is spearheading the demand for a separate State on behalf of Congress leaders, said, “where is the question of a special package, when people are eagerly awaiting an announcement on separate Telangana? We want nothing short of Telangana. I want to make it very clear that I am not aspiring to be Chief Minister of the new State. I will serve as an ordinary party worker,” he clarified.

Ministers D.K.Aruna and Sunitha Laxma Reddy also said that special package was not the solution to meet the aspirations of the the people of Telangana. “A separate State is the answer to the decade long struggle,” Ms. Aruna remarked. Another Minister Ponnala Lakshmaiah said the package along with separate Telangana would be acceptable to the people of the region.

Two City Ministers – Danam Nagender and M.Mukesh Goud, who had been favouring a united Andhra Pradesh, said the Centre must take an early decision on the issue. “We will abide by what ever decision the high command takes. Our feeling is that special package is uncalled for at this stage,” Mr.Nagender said.

However, leaders from the Seemandhra region welcomed such a proposal. Revenue Minister N.Raghuveera Reddy said he was always in favour of united State. “If the Centre wants to give a package, I will welcome it,” he said. Minister S.Sailajanath, who is also the convenor of Andhra Pradesh Congress Legislators Forum, said the Seemandhra Congress leaders would shortly hold a meeting.

Staunch integrationist and Minister T.G.Venkatesh said package was the only option left before the Centre. “If a package is announced for Telangana, we will also seek similar package for Rayalaseema, which has several backward areas,” he said.

Meanwhile, TRS members staged noisy protests in the Assembly demanding a resolution on Telangana. This led to repeated adjournment of the Assembly proceedings on Wednesday.

Returning to the House after two-day long suspension, the TRS MLAs stormed the well of the House and rejected appeals by Speaker Nadendla Manohar to resume their seats. They received support from the BJP and CPI members.