ANDHRA PRADESH

Smaller states will impede development, says analyst

ELURU, NOV. 29. P. Krishna Prasad, political analyst and the president of the Andhra Pradesh Association for Policy and Public Administration (APPA), saw a `game of one-upmanship' in the State, involving the legislature and the executive, which had `cast' a shadow on the Chief Minister Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy's road map for development on the irrigation and agriculture fronts.

Speaking on "Contemporary State politics'' at the Sir C.R. Reddy College here on Monday, Mr Prasad, a professor in the Department of Politics in Andhra University, observed; "The bureaucracy during the TDP regime in the last eight years gained an upper hand over the legislature.

The `one-man show' in the TDP Government had virtually reduced the members of the legislature to zeroes, while the bureaucracy had stepped into the latter's shoes, enjoying a greater say in the decision-making process.''

Equations changed

However, the political equations had changed in the new dispensation led by the Congress, which was based on multiple leaders, unlike the TDP.

Yet the executive had not yet come to grips with the political realities, leading to a `cold war' between the two vital organs of parliamentary democracy, Mr Prasad said.

He observed that the formation of smaller states did not augur well for the overall development of people.

"The more the number of states, the more the administrative cost. As a result, development will take a back seat,'' he said. Creation of a capital for each State was expected to cost a whopping Rs 1 lakh crores. If the demand for Telangana was conceded, it would open the floodgates for the emergence of some other smaller states such as Kalinga, with the bifurcation of the north coastal districts, Dandakaranya with the cessation of the tribal-inhabited agency areas and Rayalaseema.

Telugu neglected

Then one could imagine the strain on the States' exchequer in creation of capitals and running the administration, he said. Mr Krishna Prasad attributed the increasing demand for statehood in Telangana and other regions due to the `miserable' failure on the part of successive governments in promoting Telugu in a manner that could be a vehicle for the emotional integration of the people from different regions in the State. The college Principal, K. Srimannarayana, was in the chair.

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