Centre's U-turn on Telangana, abandons proposal for larger state

How exit polls predicting BJP sweep have affected map of Telangana


New Delhi/Hyderabad: The union government has abandoned a plan that would have made the new state of Telangana larger than originally discussed. The Centre’s decision comes just hours after exit polls showed the BJP winning four of the five states that voted recently.

The BJP had said it would not accept the proposal to add two more districts to the 10 that currently make up Telangana. Its likely sweep of the state elections – the results are due on Sunday – means that smaller parties are likely to side with it.

That has led the Congress to drop what was being called the Rayala-Telangana proposal, which could have helped it glean dividends in the national elections, due by May.

In the Telangana region, a massive bandh was called today to shoot down the Rayala-Telangana proposal.

Andhra Pradesh comprises three regions – Telangana, Coastal Andhra and Rayalaseema.

The Congress wanted to annexe two districts from Rayalaseema and club them with Telangana.

By sanctioning statehood for Telangana, the Congress hopes to sweep the region in the national elections.

Its Rayala-Telangana plan meant that Telangana would have as many seats as those of the other two parts of Andhra Pradesh, which have been opposed to the bifurcation of the state.

But K Chandrasekhara Rao or KCR, who fronted the campaign for a Telangana state, made it clear with today’s bandh that the area would not accept any additional districts.

The people of Telangana say that for years, their water, jobs and other resources have been unfairly exploited by the other two regions of Andhra Pradesh. Now that they are getting their own state, they say, they don’t want to share what’s rightfully theirs with people they see as “outsiders.”

As it is, they say, the booming IT hub of Hyderabad at the heart of Telangana has been designated a shared capital between the old and new states for 10 years. That’s about as much as they’re willing to bend.

Courtesy NDTV