Indicating that the UPA government is in no hurry to take a final call on separate Telangana, Union Home Minister P Chidambaram said Friday that the consultation process was continuing with political parties and it can take a “few weeks, it may take a couple of months and it may take three months,” to decide on the issue.
He asked the four parties — TDP, YSR Congress, Congress and MIM — to complete their consultation and revert to the Centre.
Interestingly, Union Health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad has promised the Telangana MPs he would help the party take a decision within two months. With Chidambaram further extending it by a month, the decision is expected to be further delayed.
Replying to the call attention motion moved by Leader of the Opposition Sushma Swaraj, Chidambaram took a dig at the BJP. Earlier, he said, the BJP had opposed the formation of Telangana. Former home minister L K Advani had informed the Lok Sabha on April 1, 2002, that the NDA government opposed the creation of Telangana.
He said out of the eight parties in Andhra Pradesh, BJP, CPI and TRS are supporting the formation of Telangana, while CPM is opposed to it. The rest are yet to decide.
Chidambaram, who is often accused of dividing Andhra Pradesh along emotional lines, stated that the December 9, 2009 announcement in favour of Telangana was not his decision. He had made the announcement after consulting the Business Advisory Committee followed by the all-party meeting.
“It is based on the minutes of those meetings that the Government of India, through me, made an announcement on December 9,” he clarified.
Initiating the discussion, Sushma Swaraj doubted the intentions of the UPA government and recalled that in 2004 when the UPA-I came to power, it had promised a separate state with three riders, that the decision would be made at an appropriate time after arriving at a consensus.
However, soon after, the government removed the word, consensus, from the presidential address, she pointed out. The present UPA-II dispensation, promised a State following TRS chief K Chandrasekhar Rao’s fast, but went back on its word within 14 days on the plea of “no consensus,” she said.
Gurudas Das Gupta (CPI) pleaded for a separate state and was supported by Satyanarayana Reddy, Congress MP from Telangana. K S Rao, however, opposed the demand, saying the agitation was started by disgruntled politicians. Express News