Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Mr. N. Kiran Kumar Reddy, a staunch and committed integrationist, firmly stuck to his guns regarding his stance over the Central Government’s move to carve out a separate Telangana state and without mincing any words told the GoM that it would be a :historical blinder” to bifurcate the state.
The Chief Minister met the GoM which had convened a meeting with him and also the 12 union ministers from the state as a final round consultations before completing its task of finalizing the report for the formation of Telangana State. After the three union ministers from the Telangana region — S. Jaipal Reddy, Sarve Satyanarayana and Balram Nayak –, nine Union Ministers from Seemandhra region — K.S.Rao, K.Chiranjeevi, Pallam Raju, Kotla Suryaprakash Reddy, Kishore Chandra Deo, Purandeeswari, Panabaka Laxmi and Killi Kruparani — held discussions with the GoM, Kiran Kumar Reddy spent over 90 minutes to justify why he was opposing bifurcation and the how the state would benefit if it remained united.
Kiran Kumar Reddy submitted a written letter to the GoM reiterating that he was firmly committed for keeping the state united and hence the central government should expect any support or cooperation from him in this regard. Along with his letter, the CM also submitted two voluminous books which contained in detail various problems that would crop in various sectors if the state was bifurcated.
As explained to the media later at a news conference, Kiran Kumar Reddy seemed to have mainly focused on the threat perception lingering not only over the sate but also the country from the spurt in naxalite activity once the state was bifurcated. Reminding that the Prime Minister had repeatedly expressed his concern and anguish that the biggest threat faced by the country was from naxalite and maoist activity, Kiran explained in details with facts and figures to justify his own apprehensions about the possible spurt in naxal activity.
Kiran Kumar Reddy reminded that the state had faced worst situation due to naxalite problem between 1980 to 2006. However the sate government with the assistance of Government of India was able to control the menace by taking various rehabilitation measures and financial assistance to wean away cadres from naxalite groups. He also pointed out that the central leadership of naxalite dalams in the neighbouring states like Odisha, Mahatashtra and Chattisgarh was in the hands of the extremists from Andhra Pradesh and majority of them hailed from Telangana.
Though the naxalite problem has been under control in the state since 2006, the Chief Minister conveyed his apprehensions to the GoM that if the state was bifurcated there was every possibility of the menace raising its ugly head again as the police strength would be depleted due to bifurcation. Speaking about the threat perception in Hyderabad, he explained that the state capital had become of a target of attacks by the terrorists in the recent past. Besides the terrorist attacks, the city is also a communally sensitive area needing additional deployment of around 25000 police personnel for security purposes during important events and festivals and these forces had to be drawn from the 123 districts of Seemandhra. Thus if a division of the state takes place, the peaceful atmosphere prevailing in the city would be shattered besides posing a law and problem in both the regions, he observed.
Apart from being the IT hub and a major centre for pharma and other industries, Hyderabad is the centre for higher studies with the establishment of numerous professional colleges. Thus bifurcation of the state would deprive thousands of students coming to the state capital either for higher studies or for employment purposes. Same was the case with regard to the government and private employees who have been living in Hyderabad.
Among other problems the Chief Minister highlighted before the GoM was with regard to sharing of river waters, power generation, which according to him would adversely affect the farming community. In this connection, the Chief Minister had presented a detailed document with facts and figures to justify his concerns.