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It's Official: No T-Decision Till May

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It is official now. The UPA government will not apply its mind on solving the Telangana tangle till the completion of the forthcoming round of Assembly elections in five states in May this year.

This was made abundantly clear to Telangana Congress MPs by Union Finance Minister and senior Congress leader Pranab Mukherjee during a meeting in Delhi. He chided the MPs for creating ruckus in Lok Sabha, along with Telangana Rashtra Samithi, and told them bluntly that nothing could be achieved by such bullying tactics.

Assuring the agitated MPs that the government and Congress leadership was serious about resolving Telangana issue, he said it warranted a careful and calibrated approach in view of the complexities involved.

According to a lead story in “Eenadu”, Mukherjee, a trusted lieutenant of Congress President Sonia Gandhi, asked his party colleagues to maintain restraint and desist from any protests or pressure tactics as it would put the government in trouble.

At one stage, Mukherjee warned the MPs that their belligerent utterances and actions could lead to imposition of President’s rule in AP.

Sensing that the Centre was not in a position to take a final decision on Telangana before May in view of the Assembly elections, the Telangana Political Joint Action Committee decided to modify its strategy to ensure that the statehood movement does not lose its steam. A report in “Andhra Jyothy” said a meeting the JAC Steering Committee discussed various ways to maintain the temp of agitation but felt that there was no need for TRS President K Chandrasekhar Rao and his colleague Vijayashanthi to resign from Lok Sabha as such a course would not serve any great purpose. It was decided to revive the non-cooperation movement by Telangana government employees after some gap and continue to keep up the heat till the statehood goal was achieved.

All the leading dailies ran critical stories on how AP was meted out a raw deal in the revamp of Congress Working Committee and AICC Secretariat. “Eenadu”, “Andhra Jyothy”, “Vaartha” and “Andhra Bhoomi” took note of the fact that none of the state leaders could find a place in the CWC, the party’s highest decision-making body.

Though AP contributed 33 MPs to the UPA kitty, the highest by any state, the Congress President Sonia Gandhi found no leader from the state worth nominating to the CWC. In fact, the incumbents G Venkatswamy, K Kesava Rao, Kishore Chandra Deo and N Janardhan Reddy were shown the door.

The media reports said that the deep regional divide among the state Congress leaders could have prompted the decision to keep them out of the decision-making body. In fact, Kesava Rao’s exit is attributed to his open confrontation with his own party colleagues from Seemandhra region and his rhetorical statements that he was prepared to resign for Telangana cause.

“Andhra Jyothy”, however, quoted KK as saying that he himself had requested the central leadership to keep him out of the CWC.

The growing friction in the Telugu Desam Party over Telangana issue was given prominent coverage across the leading publications. “Vaartha”, in its front page story, said the TDP President has decided to constitute an eight-member coordination committee with representation from all the three regions to put an end to the internal squabbles. However, senior leader Nagam Janardhan Reddy, who is nursing a strained relationship with his boss, is understood to have opposed the idea.

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