Telangana Congress MPs press for separate state

Written by: Rama Mohan
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New Delhi, Jan 12: A 14-member group of Congress MPs from Telangana of Andhra Pradesh on Wednesday, Jan 12, met the party top leaders and reiterated the need of forming a separate Telangana state.

The MPs, including senior leader and Rajya Sabha member K. Keshava Rao, told Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee, Defence Minister A K Antony and Law Minister M Veerappa Moily that there was no alternative than forming a separate Telangana state as the demand was genuine and very old.

"with all humility at our command, we assert in one voice that there is no alternative to separate Telengana. We have made it abundantly clear in our last meeting while pledging our loyalty to the party. This is the inalienable demand of the people of Telengana and we resolve to stand by people to uphold Congress banner," the MPs told in a memorandum submitted to Mukherjee.

"We want separate Telangana. It is a people's movement," Keshava Rao said while coming out from the meeting.

A students' group from Telangana shouted slogans in support of their demand at the meeting venue and pleaded with the MPs to strive to achieve Telangana state. The day before, former Kadapa MP YS Jagan Mohan Reddy had organised a day-long fast in the capital along with two dozens of Congress MLAs, some of whom belong to Telangana area as well.

The Congress leadership's earlier plan was to meet the MPs individually, but the MPs' group insisted on meeting party heads together.

Following the Srikrishna Committee's report, which has given both the options of keeping Andhra Pradesh united or carving out Telangana state, the Congress high command has adopted a 'wait and watch' policy. To tackle the situation in AP, the party has now largely depended on the new chief minister N Kiran Kumar Reddy.

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