Even as Home Minister P. Chidambaram’s statement that more consultations are needed on the Telangana issue is viewed as a well-balancing act, giving no victory or defeat for both Telengana and Andhra-Rayalaseema regions of Andhra Pradesh, the BJP has come out strongly against the Centre and said the announcement would create more problems.
The main Opposition party accused the Centre of taking a U-turn on the issue, stating that political parties were not divided on the formation of a separate State. BJP spokesman Prakash Javedakar said his party was “very clear” on the issue of Telangana and still supported the creation of a separate State.
He said the UPA government had announced that it would initiate steps to form a Telangana State without doing “proper homework …The Centre is adding fuel to the fire.”
Hectic consultations with Congress MPs belonging to the Telengana and Andhra-Rayalaseema regions were held at the party as well as government levels before the government came out with the latest statement. Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Congress president Sonia Gandhi were deeply involved in the consultations, and the views of senior leaders like Pranab Mukherjee, A.K. Antony, M. Veerappa Moily and Ahmed Patel were taken before releasing of the statement.
Earlier, the Congress, in its official reaction to the issue, said it was up to the collective wisdom of all political parties in Andhra Pradesh to find a solution.
Telangana was a four-decade-old demand and successive generation of politicians had grappled with the issue.
‘Balanced and perfect’
Rajya Sabha member T. Subbarami Reddy, who is strongly pressing for a unified Andhra Pradesh, welcomed Mr. Chidambaram’s statement and said it was “absolutely very balanced and perfect” and made with a “democratic view.”
Another MP from the Andhra region K. Sambasiva Rao (Eluru) did not accept the view that Mr. Chidambaram’s statement reiterated the Centre’s stand on the creation of Telengana. Though the Andhra-Rayalseema MPs were demanding a unified Andhra Pradesh, they never opposed the demands of the Telengana people, he said, welcoming the statement.
Peddapalle Lok Sabha member and Telengana supporter G. Vivekananda pointed out that Mr. Chidambaram only stated that the Centre would hold consultations with all the political parties and groups and did not say that the Centre would try for consensus. There were lot differences between “consultation” and “consensus” and even if some parties backtracked on the issue, the Centre could go ahead and form a separate Telengana, he said.