Pressure mounted on the Centre with Congress MPs and MLAs demanding a time-frame for creation of Telangana state as its protagonists enforced a bandh in the region but the Centre pinned its hopes on the consultation process for a solution.
Home Minister P Chidambaram also made it clear that the Centre was not thinking of imposing President’s rule in Andhra Pradesh, where the campaigners for a separate state are planning to escalate protests on top of the two-day bandh that concluded on Wednesday in 10 districts of the state.
Representatives of Congress MPs and MLAs met Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee on Tuesday night and urged that the Centre and the party high command fix a “time frame” for the creation of the new state.“Give us a time frame. Be it six months, three months or two months,” said Congress MP from Telangana region K Keshav Rao, who has resigned his Rajya Sabha membership.
Over 100 MLAs and 15 MPs belonging to various parties have resigned membership of Assembly and Parliament in a bid to pressure the Centre to take an early decision on their demand.
However, Rao said the resignations were not a tool to arm twist anyone but only fulfil the urge for a separate state.
With speculation that the Centre would impose a spell of President’s rule in the state, Chidambaram told a press conference in New Delhi on Wednesday, “We are not thinking of President’s rule. We are unhappy that so many MLAs and MPs have tendered their resignation.”
Chidambaram said they would engage with the MPs and MLAs. Already Congress General Secretary (Ghulam Nabi Azad) in charge in the Congress party has met and discussed the issues with them.
“We hope that the process of consultations will show us the path to reach a conclusion,” he said.
“The status as of today is consultation process is still continuing. No decision has been taken yet,” he said.
On law and order, Chidambaram said the Centre has provided forces to the state but added he sincerely hoped that there will not be a breakdown of law and order.
“I sincerely hope and appeal to everyone, while we understand the provocation for an agitation, we sincerely hope that even those who agitate will not not lead to a break down of law and order,” he said.
Meanwhile, normal life was affected for the second day on Wednesday in the ten districts of Telangana region following a 48-hour shutdown call given by Telangana Political Joint Action Committee for a separate statehood. This will be followed by a rail roko on 8th and 9th July.
Tension prevailed in Osmania University in Hyderabad with pro-Telangana students clashing with police.
The CPI(M) blamed the Congress and the Centre for the “deepening political crisis” on Telangana and demanded an immediate decision on the issue.
The politburo said in a statement in Delhi that the inaction of the government and the Congress leadership in resolving the issue was the main cause for the present impasse.