Special Correspondent

TIRUPATI: Telangana Rashtra Samiti president (TRS) K. Chandrasekhar Rao on Monday sought to debunk the argument that development was possible only if Andhra Pradesh remained integrated.

It was a serious misconception, he said and cited the example of bad road conditions in Uttar Pradesh, the biggest State in the country with 80-odd parliamentary constituencies.

“It took me eight hours to travel 100 km in UP when I took a car to specifically study the development status in the State,” he said and referred in contrast as to how a small State like Kerala stood foremost in terms of literacy and general development. Mr. Rao was participating in a ‘Meet the Press’ programme organised by the Tirupati Press Club here. In

The TRS founder said the separate Telangana agitation had now reached a ‘decisive stage’ when all parties especially the Congress, which was yet to come out clearly on the issue, had to say ‘yes’ or ‘no’.

The upcoming winter session of Parliament in December was the last chance for the Congress to introduce the Bill on separate Telangana. “If it does not introduce the Bill in December, its game plan would be clear and its fate also would be doomed in the State,” he said.

To a question, he said the TRS would not be averse to have an understanding with the Congress in the ensuing elections if it tabled the Bill in Parliament in the next session and said ‘yes’ to Telangana.

Mr. Rao said that it would be wrong to think that it would be the be all and end all for Telugus in the State if Telangana was separated.

Canards

“It’s again canard deliberately being spread by vested interests. We will roll a red carpet for all who help us develop our underdeveloped region. In fact our fight is for development and as such why should we oppose anybody,” he asked.

Asked if Hyderabad did not look developed to him, Mr. Rao said mere demographic development and expansion of its periphery were no development. Quality of life should be the barometer to assess development of any place, he said. He asserted that there was no question of accepting Telangana minus Hyderabad.