Separation: The Story 40 Years Ago
Many of us who are hard-core Telanganites find it hard to believe that the demand for statehood has re-surfaced without any reason, says The True Mulki
The True Mulki / fullhyd.com
Hyderabad | 10th December 2009
In 1969, some of you might not have been born. The idea of a separate Telangana floated by Dr. Chenna Reddy, which was taken forward by the Telangana Praja Samithi, was the cause for huge destruction of lives and property.
What were the issues at that time, and what are they now?
I would say that the issues are no different but luckily the treatment by the protesters is slightly different and better. I still remember that, as a 11-year-old living in the same area as I do now (about a km from Mehdipatnam and about 2 km from Shaikpet), I was shocked to hear that the protesters burnt down Dr. Kakarla Subba Rao Garu's property that was a landmark in Shaikpet.
In 1969, they also burnt down buses, and a curfew was imposed, and the people who were to bear the brunt were the true sons of the soil (the poorest of poor and, mostly, labourers from our own region of Telangana).
Later, the movement dissipated, and also the same Dr. Reddy got governorship and was "rewarded" with the CM's seat of the undivided AP. Many pundits talked about the lack of attention given to "Our Poor Telangana".
A few questions:
1. There have been hundreds of MPs and MLAs from our region. What is it that they have done for their constituencies? Have they identified a development plan, and if so, has that been rejected by the state government? Or is it that a few factories were planned but the state government opposed it? One is really unable to comprehend as to why the area that KCR represents is still backward.
2. Will these opportunities be given only to the sons of the soil? If yes, will the demand not be the same as the MNS in Maharastra? What about our people who are in other states? Should they also be sent back?
3. Who would you define as a local, and on what basis - is it by birth only, or is it by the number of years that you have been here? This will give rise to a number of issues that need a lot of analysis and sorting out of, before being implemented.
4. How are the poorest of poor going to benefit from a Statehood? I am not talking about corruption, but am referring to the basic necessities of life. Is the state going to be able to provide a better standard of living for the poorest of the poor? If yes, how?
5. The most important question is - why was the issue on a backburner all these years (KCR formed the party several years ago, and also tried unsuccessfully to contest the elections on a "separate statehood" plank). Is there something more to it than meets the eye (please refer to the front page of TOI, Dec 7, 2009)?
Many of us who are hard-core Telanganites find it hard to believe that the demand for statehood has re-surfaced without any reason, and that there is so much of support for a cause that was almost routed in the assembly elections.
I think that we all need to remember that THIS IS A POLITICAL DECISION AND THAT THE COMMON MAN AND HIS LIFE/WORK/PROPERTY SHOULD NOT BE AFFECTED.
When our political leaders agreed to the demand for separate statehood, they have, hopefully, thought through the repercussions and then taken the final decisions. It is indeed good to talk about the pride of Telanganites, and also to keep stating that our pride has been trampled for several centuries by the "others" (read, "Andhraites"), but finally, remember that partition needs to be carefully designed and thought of before being successful.
The opinions expressed in this article are solely those of the writer, and do not reflect the views of fullhyd.com
filed in: 1969, Chenna Reddy, KCR, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana Praja Samithi, Telangana