Monday, July 29, 2013

Telangana state likely to be announced tomorrow

New Delhi:July 29, 2013 (7STARNEWS)A new state of Telangana is likely to be announced tomorrow by the government. Sources say that the top decision-making body of the Congress, its Working Committee, will formally endorse the move to bifurcate Andhra Pradesh on Tuesday, a decision which was taken by party president Sonia Gandhi a few days ago.

Before that, Mrs Gandhi and the Prime Minister will meet with their allies who participate in the government to formally inform them of the road-map for India\'s 29th state.

Hyderabad, sources said, will not be designated a Union Territory. Instead, the city with its booming economy powered largely by the IT industry, will be a shared capital for Andhra Pradesh and the new Telangana state.

Congress leaders from Andhra Pradesh who are from the two non-Telangana regions of Coastal Andhra and Rayalaseema had objected to statehood for Telangana, arguing that their voters would respond with retributive force. But the party has reportedly made it clear that it will not reconsider its stand; Chief Minister Kiran Kumar Reddy is upset but has been persuaded not to resign in protest, said sources.

Telangana\'s future is imbricated with the national elections, now just months away. Andhra Pradesh has 42 parliamentary constituencies. The Congress has calculated that creating a new state will deliver strong returns. But just in case, it\'s weighing how to graph the geography for maximum electoral ground.

So the government may seek to affix two districts from Rayalaseema to Telangana\'s existing 10 districts. This will ensure the new and old states have 20 parliamentary seats each, and that the stronghold of political rival Jagan Mohan Reddy is divided across the new border.


The actual formation of the state is expected to be completed by early next year. The cabinet will share its plans with President Pranab Mukherjee and the Andhra Pradesh legislature will be asked for insights.

The PM will then set up a committee to negotiate consensus between the leaders from the three regions of the state for issues like how to share revenue and water.

Both Houses of Parliament will have to then pass the resolution for the creation of a separate state.

The five-decade struggle for a Telangana state was forced onto the contemporary national agenda in 2009 by the Telangana Rashtra Samithi or TRS, headed by K Chandrasekhara Rao. He fasted for 10 days, triggering huge rallies of support.

In response, in December 2009, in a surprise announcement, the Centre said it was sanctioning statehood. But within days, the government backtracked as violent protests erupted in the other two regions-Coastal Andhra Pradesh and Rayalaseema.
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