The two articles on Telangana with opposite views (Open Page, Feb. 7) made interesting reading. While one argues that the people of Andhra Pradesh should gracefully make way for a separate State, the other asserts that a separate State is not the solution. A separate State is in the interest of neither Telangana nor coastal Andhra. Once Andhra Pradesh is divided, Telangana will become a land-locked State and remain as backward as it is now. Hyderabad is what it is today because of the hard work and huge investment of people of all regions. It is possible to work out a package with greater autonomy for Telangana. It will ensure faster growth, better sharing of water resources and more education and employment opportunities.

P. Venkateswarlu, Ganjam

The demand for a separate State of Telangana is not about restoring the old State as it existed. If it were so, many districts of Maharashtra and Karnataka would have to be returned to the Hyderabad State. Let us, therefore, look at the issue afresh. There is no guarantee that the bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh will solve backwardness, the issue of farmers’ debt, Maoism etc. We cannot say ‘for 53 years we did not solve our problems, let us separate and see if it helps.’ The ruling elite are only too happy to divide people on the lines of region, religion, caste and language. All issues in Andhra Pradesh have been drowned in the Telangana controversy, a proxy war between the Andhra and the Telangana elite.

J. Prabhakar, Hyderabad

The argument that the districts of Telangana are underdeveloped and therefore a separate State is required is unacceptable. There are many underdeveloped districts in other regions of Andhra Pradesh too. Prosperity is not automatic in smaller States. All households in a village are not equally well off. Will the division of the village help? The causes leading to economic disparities need to be addressed to create an equitable society. We should not allow regional tensions to undermine the national fabric.

L. Haresh, Noida

Andhra Pradesh was not the first State in India to be formed on the basis of language as stated by E. Muralidharan in his article for a Telangana State. In April 1936, the province of Odisha (now Orissa) was formed on the basis of language. Andhra Pradesh was the first linguistic State formed after Independence. If the Telangana region could not develop as part of Andhra Pradesh, what is the guarantee that it will not be neglected after being granted statehood?

T.P. Dash, Srikakulam

The disadvantages of a separate State outweigh the possible advantages of a bifurcation. What the Telangana region needs is due representation in the Cabinet and adequate funds for development.

K.D. Viswanaathan, Coimbatore

Even though the Telangana issue has put the government in a catch-22 situation, a separate State alone can resolve it amicably in the long run. The argument that granting statehood to Telangana will lead to demands for separate States of Gorkhaland, Vidharbha, etc. becoming louder is ridiculous. If it were true, how and why were Jharkhand and Chhattisgarh carved out of States in the Hindi belt? Each issue needs to be examined with political maturity based on merit.

T.R. Baggi, Hyderabad

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