This refers to the report that the Telangana decision has triggered demands for more States across the country. But we have nothing to fear from the possible formation of smaller States. Much of the hue and cry over the growing demand for States like Gorkhaland, Bodoland, Purvanchal, Awadh Pradesh, Bundelkhand and Vidarbha is unwarranted.
The problem arises only when well-meant demands are associated with parochialism and, more illogically, with separatism. If we devolve power on the common people and deepen democracy at the grass-roots, we can safely go for smaller States.
G. David Milton,
The UPA government’s decision to agree to the decades-old demand for a separate State of Telengana was inevitable and correct under the present circumstances. When the people of a region overwhelmingly aspire for a separate State, it is only prudent to examine the demand and accede to it before emotions go out of hand. Many lives have been needlessly lost in the name of Telangana.
Similarly, there is nothing wrong in sympathetically looking into the demands for the separate States of Vidarbha, Gorkhaland, Bodoland, etc., if that is what the people of those regions want. Forming smaller States will not go against the spirit of national integration as long as they remain within the country and function under its Constitution. If having 28 States has not harmed national unity, 30 or 35 states will not make any difference.
The formation of Telangana will open a Pandora’s box — true; it will give rise to demands for more States — of course; it will involve huge investments to set up new capitals — indeed; it will lead to the balkanisation of India — I beg to disagree. Telangana should not be seen as just the division of a State or a political gimmick. The creation of States on the basis of their shared culture, identity, geography and problems is a must to administer it well, to take it towards the path of development.
It is too early to comment on the right or wrong of the UPA government’s decision. The bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh may prove fruitful in later years provided the decision was motivated by genuine concern for balanced regional growth. Let us hope the decision was not just another political tactic to stay in power.