Days after being critical of the Congress high-command’s decision to bifurcate Andhra Pradesh, Chief Minister N. Kiran Kumar Reddy on Thursday said options needed to be exercised with caution.
Speaking to Rajya Sabha TV in the context of hopes on a viable solution, he said, “No match is over until the last ball is bowled.”
“Sharing of water is going to be a major issue if the State is separated. We already have enough issues with Tamil Nadu and Karnataka and we are talking about another boundary. All the river water control boards have failed miserably,” Mr. Reddy said quoting the Cauvery and Punjab Accords.
“We have a lot of problems which need to be addressed. Key issues include the capital city, power and water sharing,” he added.
Lakhs of businessmen and professionals shifted from Madras to Kurnool and then to Hyderabad in 1953 with the hope that it would remain the permanent capital. They have huge stakes in the city, he said.
“Besides, we made it the educational, medical and IT capital of the State. We also have a peculiar recruitment process. We need to think of solutions before thinking of division, and definitely not after that,” the Chief Minister added.
On power issues, Mr. Reddy said, “Telangana produces half the power it consumes. Once all the lift irrigation schemes in the region, which are mandatory given the low levels of water source, the region requires 175 million units per day for 4 to 5 months each year. There will be a huge displacement of people in both the regions if we go ahead with the decision now,” he said.