Hyderabad: By setting a deadline of July 4 to the Centre to make an announcement on the separate Telangana demand or they would resign, Congress Legislators from the region have given that much needed breather to the High Command.
The resignations, when submitted will undoubtedly leave the Congress High Command sighing with relief and with smiles all around.
It is a foregone conclusion that the resignations of the Congress Legislators from Telangana, when submitted to the Deputy Chairman of the Rajya Sabha, Speakers of the Lok Sabha and the Andhra Pradesh Assembly on July 4, will not be accepted.
It would be safe to assume that these resignations would not be rejected either, but in all probability, a ‘decision’ would be kept in abeyance.
In simple words, the ruling Congress party cannot risk these resignations being accepted, especially in light of the main opposition party in Andhra Pradesh, the Telugu Desam Party’s stated intent to bring in a No Confidence Motion against the state government.
If Assembly Speaker Nadendla Manohar does indeed accept the resignations of more than 50 Congress MLAs, then the effective strength of the party would be reduced to about 130 Members in the Assembly.
In the event of the Congress MLAs’ resignations being accepted, the ruling Congress party would be at immense risk of falling.
The present strength in the house, after the resignation of Telugu Desam Party MLA Pocharam Srinivas was accepted, is 293. If the resignations of these 50 MLAs is accepted, the House strength would come down to 240+.
The Congress then would need the support of at least 120+ MLAs.
On paper, the government has the requisite strength to survive any Vote of Confidence, obviously with the support of its allies and increase in its ranks with the merger of the Praja Rajyam Party. However, the unknown factor, in the form of YSR Congress Party president YS Jaganmohan Reddy, is certain to play its part in the decision whether to accept the resignations or not.
While the YSR Congress Party leaders’ have been claiming to have the support of anything from 10 to 40 MLAs, the exact number of Legislators who support the party is unclear.
By putting the decision on accepting the resignations in abeyance, the Congress party, which heads the ruling coalition at the Centre and has formed the government on its own in the state, will get that much needed time to build a consensus on Telangana.
Pressure on the Congress High Command to take a decision on the contentious separate statehood issue has been steadily more or less building from the time the result of elections to Assemblies of five states had been declared.
Submission of their resignations has been, more or less, the last weapon of the Congress Legislators. Once they submit their resignations, they can be more easily controlled by the High Command.
They cannot push the High Command to take an early decision by saying that they are answerable to the people of their constituencies. By resigning, they would have proved their sincerity to the Telangana cause.
The lure of posts and the threat of disciplinary action would be a big deterrent to them and most certainly stop them from resorting to agitations.(INN)