Special Correspondent

Mandal and village level leaders reportedly tell Naidu that Telangana sentiment is non-existent

HYDERABAD: In what appears to be a rebuff to senior Telugu Desam party leaders from Telangana, a majority of the second rung leaders from five Assembly constituencies in as many districts of the region believed to have backed integrated State stand of the party. These leaders heading mandals formed the first batch from whom the party president, N. Chandrababu Naidu began his opinion-gathering exercise on Thursday as promised to the senior party leaders. This was done in the presence of the seniors including T. Devender Goud, who had been articulating the view that the party should take a firm stand on separate Telangana.

But upsetting the seniors’ calculations, the mandal and village level leaders reportedly told Mr. Naidu in no uncertain terms that the Telangana sentiment was virtually non-existent, though TRS was trying hard to portray it otherwise. TDP would gain politically if it maintained its credible stand of integrated State, leaving the separate Telangana issue to be tackled by TRS and Congress. After all it was these two parties which have made this promise to the people and deceived them, they felt.

These leaders came from Vikarabad assembly constituency in Ranga Reddy district , Ramayampet in Medak, Yellareddy in Nizamabad, Alair in Nalgonda and Jadcherla in Mahabubnagar.