Where does Nizam's city belong?
Soon-to-be-formed Telangana state and Seemandhra claim entitlement to Hyderabad city, a major industry-technology hub in South India. In a way, it was the opulence of Hyderabad that led Telangana region to start revolting for a separate state as they felt people from Seemandhra region are the sole beneficiaries of Hyderabad's development.
Even as the officials procedures for the state bifurcation are set to begin, the leaders from Telangana seem to be engrossed in the political fight over the hi-tech city. No constructive plan has been formed to solve the developmental issues faced by Telangana. This might make things worse than ever for the region. Creating a political boundary seems to be the leaders' priority rather than making efforts to improve people's lives.
K Chandrasekhara Rao, chief of Telangana Rashtra Samithi, has said that after the formation of Telangana, employees from Seemandhra region will have to vacate their positions and leave the new state. This calls for huge investments to recruit new employees and create a new administration in Seemandhra.
Lack of skill in Telangana is also a worry. Another recent survey has said that only around 15% of IT sector employees in Hyderabad are from Telangana region. This calls for imparting better education and providing skills training to students from the region. In short, Telangana will have start from the scatch.
There are speculations that IT companies and business enterprises might leave Hyderabad and move to the new capital. The political leaders in Telangana, especially of those parties which were formed with the sole purpose of creating a new state, have hardly any track record in encouraging new industries and helping the region develop economically.
Meanwhile, a recent study submitted by finance ministry says revenue from Seemandhra region is more than that from Telangana (Times of India, Nov 9). This should dispel the apprehensions of Seemandhra leaders who had earlier been expressing fear about losing Hyderabad. However, there are many people from Seemandhra region who have migrated to Hyderabad for skilled and menial jobs. Though they hope they won't have to leave Hyderabad post-bifurcation, they are worried about the increasing hostility between people from both the regions.
The state-bifurcation crisis has indeed led to an emotional rift between people from both the regions. Puncturing tyres of vehicles from Seemandhra, tarnishing shops with 'Andhra'/'Vizag'/'Rayalaseema' in their names etc are very common in Telangana. Creating an atmosphere of peace and cooperation is very important for the new state to march ahead towards development.
In short, the erst-while city of Hyderabad has a very tough time ahead. It will have to lead the development dreams of an infant state, retain the dreams of hundreds of others and uphold centuries of rich history.
(With agency inputs)