Rahul Gandhi’s Visit To AP: Will He Apologize On Bifurcation Woes?

AICC vice-president Rahul Gandhi is visiting the State today for the first time after bifurcation. The State has been suffering for the unjust bifurcation executed by the Congress-led UPA. They have given assets and revenue for TS, besides Hyderabad and leaving AP on the roads.
Rahul Gandhi’s Visit To AP: Will He Apologize On Bifurcation Woes?

Krishna Kishore

Amaravati: It is three years now the State was bifurcated by the Congress-led UPA with the conditional backing of the BJP-led NDA. The two parties, with an understanding and mutual support, have passed the AP Reorganisation Act 2014, closing the doors, switching off the cameras for telecast and even beating up the AP MPs on the floor of the House. The world’s largest Democracy which lives in Parliament had witnessed the murkiest scenes ever, including the infamous Pepper Spray and the Bill was finally passed.

All the existing assets, of both the State and the Central government, were given to the Telangana, leaving nothing for AP, except the promise of a list of 12 Central institutions to be established in the State over a period of 10 years, besides ‘examining’ the possibility of establishing a few more. The revenue too was left to the Telangana, leaving AP with a whopping revenue deficit of Rs 16,000 crore. The capital Hyderabad was given to TS and was made a joint capital for a period of 10 years, leaving AP to find its own capital.

The youth have lost their education and employment opportunities in Hyderabad, a city that had turned out to be the America for thousands of families of Seemandhra, as it was called at the time of bifurcation. The hopes of these families have been shattered and it would take at least half-a-decade for the State to have a city like Hyderabad with opportunities for education and employment.

The Congress which had promised Special Category Status for five years and the BJP which wanted it for 10 years and the TDP that lobbied it for 15 years have all gone back betraying the people. The Congress did not give a Constitutional guarantee for the SCS that had come in handy for the BJP to deny it. The BJP leadership must have had pressure from other States that investments from their States too would go to AP if the SCS is given and that must have been the reason for the Modi government to go back on the SCS promise. The TDP had compromised on whatever the Modi government says about the State and it has its own reasons for that.

Now, Rahul Gandhi, who heads the party that had bifurcated the State, owes and explanation to the people of the State on his first visit. He should first apologize for the manner in which the State was bifurcated and he should apologize for the UPA government’s failure to give Constitutional status to the SCS demand. He can then speak about the failures of the BJP-TDP in doing justice to the State and people after bifurcation. Any criticism by him on NDA, particularly with reference to the AP, by Rahul Gandhi is welcome only if he tendered apologies to the people on the bifurcation woes, which happened during his party-led coalition’s regime.

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Insist For Debate In Parliament, Undavalli Tells Naidu

Former MP Undavalli Arun Kumar asked CM Naidu to hold debate on the post-bifurcation scenario in Parliament and not in AP. He promised his support if TDP takes up debate in Parliament.
Insist For Debate In Parliament, Undavalli Tells Naidu

Rajahmahendravaram: Former MP Undavalli Arun Kumar had asked Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu to take the debate on post-bifurcation scenario in Parliament. While extending his support, the former MP wanted the Chief Minister to see that Parliament debates the injustice done to the State in bifurcation, if his feelings of injustice were true and honest. He said people in the State have nothing in their hands either to correct or do justice to the State and advised the Chief Minister to initiate the debate in Parliament which had bifurcated the State.

Arun Kumar said that he too was feeling that injustice was done to the State in the name of bifurcation. He said he had challenged the bifurcation in the Supreme Court and has all the legal evidences to prove his claim. He offered to give his legal points if Chandrababu Naidu made his MPs to raise the issue in Parliament instead of speaking in AP for a week. He said that Chandrababu Naidu had been holding such discussions and debates in Andhra Pradesh for the past three years and could achieve nothing. He felt that the State would get its due share and the injustice could be corrected only if Parliament debated the issues.

While stating that Chandrababu Naidu’s TDP was part of the bifurcation as the TDP had given two letters in favour of bifurcation, the former MP wondered why the TDP chief was trying to escape from his responsibilities. He asserted that the TDP cannot escape from its role even in the post-bifurcation where the party had failed to get the Special Category Status as promised in the 2014 elections. He sought to advise the TDP chief to stop shedding crocodile tears on bifurcation to get political mileage as people are wise enough to understand the TDP’s role in the bifurcation and the post-bifurcation.

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2014, A Year of Defections

  • Turncoats rule the roost
  • Opportunism at its peak in Telangana
  • Persons who flayed TRS become ministers
  • Half of KCR Cabinet contains Aya Rams

Hyderabad, December 30: It is no exaggeration in describing 2014 as the year of defections as for as Andhra Pradesh was concerned, be it before or after its bifurcation. Undoubtedly the “Aya rams and Gaya rams” from the political tribe were in the limelight during the year for their quest for greener pastures for survival and thus triggering off an exodus from one party to another. As a matter of fact the year brought into the open the political debauchery as leaders unabashedly joined the very parties against which they had earlier spewed venom and launched a vitriolic attack.

The defection drama began to unfold once bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh has become inevitable. Though the process of separation was set in motion in late 2013, the formalities were completed in 2014 after Parliament cleared the AP Reorganization Bill in February. The scheduled elections to AP Legislative Assembly along with the Lok Sabha polls in April-May gave the much needed impetus to the opportunistic leaders to jump from one party to another.

It was the ruling Congress the worst affected due to defections. In fact the Congress was already a divided house what with the movement for separate Telangana spearheaded by TRS gaining ground. While Congress leaders from Telangana supported the cause for separation, those from the Seemandhra region stoutly opposed bifurcation of the state. However, the Assembly elections set into motion the exodus from Congress.

Minister Jupalli Krishna Rao, Rajya Sabha member K.Keshava Rao, Lok Sabha members G. Vivek and Manda Jagannadham had quit Congress and joined TRS. However, Vivek just before the elections jumped back into the Congress and faced a humiliating defeat from Peddapalli Lok Sabha constituency at the hands of a student leader Suman fielded by TRS. Many other ministers from Seemandhra region like Ganta Srinivasa Rao, Galla Aruna, T.G.Venkatesh and Erasu Pratap Reddy and former minister J. C. Diwakar Reddy left the sinking boat of the Congress and joined the Telugu Desam. Another seasoned and long-time parliamentarian Rayapati Sambasiva Rao and minister Shatrucharla Vijayarama Raju also joined the TDP. Though many of them managed to secure TDP tickets and contested the elections, some got elected due to their personal image, while others faced defeat as voters taught them a lesson for turning defectors.

Some senior central ministers belonging to the Congress like K.S.Rao and Daggubati Purandeeshwari, who were not welcomed in the TDP, joined the BJP and even managed to enter the electoral battle on behalf of their new party. Despite the Modi wave sweeping the country, the two received a severe drubbing from the electorate.

While the ruling Congress became a sinking ship both in Telangana and Seemandhra regions before the elections, the TDP and the YSRCP were the beneficiaries. However, after the elections it was TRS, which came to power in Telangana State, turned out be the most sought after party. And the TDP as well as the Congress again were ditched by their partymen who made a beeline to the pink party.  While former congress minister Konda Surekha and her husband Konda Murali, who had defected to YSRCP, dumped the party just before the elections to join TRS, others including many Congress MLCs joined the pink brigade.

The TDP also suffered a severe setback in Telangana as many senior party legislators like Talasani Srinivas Yadav , Teegala Krishana Reddy and others jumped into TRS. Even a senior who had served a minister in the TDP regime, Thummala Nageshwar Rao opted for the car (TRS symbol) by discarding the cycle (TDP symbol). Interestingly many of those who had joined TRS from other parties were provided berths in the KCR ministry. As a matter fact, half of KCR cabinet is filled with defectors from various parties.

Though before the elections there was a scramble among political leaders to join the YSRCP what with apparently bright prospects of Jaganmohan Reddy taking the reins of power in the residuary AP, the party’s drubbing at the polls made many senior leaders who had jumped into its bandwagon desert it. Senior leaders like Konathala Ramakrishna, Dadi Veerabhadra Rao have quit YSRCP and are waiting in the wings to join TDP. Jupudi Prabhakar, a staunch supporter of Jagan, quit YSRCP and joined TDP and became its spokesperson.

Some senior Congress parliamentarian like Sabbam Hari who was with YSRCP had quit at the last moment before elections. Congress leaders Harsha Kumar, Undavalli Arun Kumar and others remain rudderless after the party founded by former Chief Minister Kiran Kumar Reddy was routed in the elections. All of those who contested on Samaikyandhra Party of Kiran tasted defeat and went into political oblivion. While some of them are planning to jump into BJP bandwagon others are waiting for a call from TDP.

Thus the year 2014, which undoubtedly would go down in political history as the year of defections, proved lucky for TRS  President K. Chandrashekhar Rao, to realize his dream of becoming a chief minister, as well as TDP President N. Chandrababu Naidu to bounce back to power. (NSS)

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TOUGH DAYS AHEAD for Telugu CMs

  • Problems continue to haunt
  • Metro notes is disturb in
  • Pensions list is confusing

(M Ramdas)

It increasingly appears that both Chandrasekhar Rao and Chandrababu Naidu will face more stormy days and nights as Chief Ministers. Bifurcation had initially seen popular rejoicing and a build-up of high expectations among the masses. But, after six months of belied expectations and broken promises, the outlook is very different. For example, land pooling for a new capital has not gone smoothly for Naidu with farmers questioning the modalities and the offered package. Similarly, Rao is wrestling with the farm loan waiver scheme and the flawed pension scheme, ‘Asra’.

The much-heralded pension scheme appears to have no clear guidelines for selection of beneficiaries. In a mindless manner, the Government has, it appears, excluded thousands of eligible people from the list. Even pensioners already enjoying the benefits have been struck off. There is worry and apprehension about the moves of the Telangana Government.

The Metro Rail project which is hoped will ease future traffic congestion in the twin cities and lead to cheap, swift travel, is bogged down in controversy. It has to be said that KCR is allowing politics to take precedence over practicality and promises made. The Opposition is not amused. After prevailing upon the Project directors to realign certain sections to save the architectural splendour of the Assembly building as well preserve the livelihood of hundreds of Sultan Bazar traders. But suddenly, KCR wanted a realignment in the Old City because of pressure from his ally, the MIM. Will not this unprofessional approach further delay the already limping Metro scheme? People are already weary of the extensive and endless construction activity creative havoc with traffic jams and restricted movement. Will the reputed international body backing the Project allow this is kind of vacillation by the Chief Minister?

Both the CMs have ambitious plans and want to move ahead and achieve some success. But their constituents are not convinced and are sceptical of their motives. Farmers especially have seen the promises of a rosy future dashed. They are also quite savvy and aware and not gullible as before. But the rural scene in Telangana is cause for serious concern, with poor marginal framers taking their lives in protest against an indifferent and unfeeling bureaucracy. KCR faces a real crisis of confidence and his grip over his electorate is slipping. Naidu is somewhat better placed as a leader. However, building a brand new capital is no cake walk. Both the divided Telugu supremos are sure to have a rocky road ahead, with no relief in sight in the near future.

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Selling dreams to hapless people

Telugu CMs indulging in grandiose plans with near empty coffers

  • Unable to sit across the table to resolve contentious issues
  • Delhi forced to play referee
  • Student community and farmers are worst sufferers
  • Governance in shambles as IAS officers are yet to be allotted
  • 6 months passed since bifurcation

Hyderabad, November 30: Six months have passed since the two states of Telangana and Andhra Pradesh were formed. They have been caught in a slew of intractable issues impeding the governance and development. Small things like conducting examinations for Intermediate students have become major issues warranting the intervention of the courts and the central governments.

Selling dreams

Two Neros are ruling the new states of Telangana and Andhra Pradesh. The original Nero was fiddling while Rome was burning, the neo Neros of Telugu states have been indulging in irresponsible promises and grandiose plans while the farmers are committing suicide and the students are spending sleepless nights not knowing when their exams would be held.

kcr

(File Photo)

Ration cards, pensions, college admissions have been the major concerns that have been agitating the minds of the people. Farmers in Telangana districts of Medak (which elected Chief Minister K Chandrasekhara Rao-KCR), Warangal and Adilabad and AP district of Anantapur have been committing suicides in hundreds. Both the chief ministers are avers to talking about the human trfarmer suicide-30agedy leave alone taking remedial measures. The revenue officials have been orally asked not to record the suicides of the farmers as farm-related. There have been more than 400 suicides by farmers after the formation of Telangana state and about 60 farmers in Anantapur district killed themselves due to debt burden.

The Intermediate students are anxiously waiting for their examination schedules. Students of both the states are caught in a controversy between the two state governments. Courts were approached delaying the decision making process. Governor ESL Narasimhan was summoned by the Centre to find a solution to the problems. He is visiting Delhi for three days from Monday. The Chief Secretaries of both the states have been visiting Delhi instead of meeting in Hyderabad to sort out problems. Chief Ministers who are not capable of resolving issues that are affecting the student community are indulging in big talk. They are not taking any measures to discuss the problems thrown up by bifurcation of the state. Most of the issues can be resolved amicably if both the CMs sit across the table with their officials and discuss matters threadbare. But the students-30goodwill is missing and the result is avoidable inconvenience and loss. Students have been the worst affected by the lack of concern on the part of the state governments. Things have been mismanaged thoroughly by the officers of the education departments and the Council of Higher Education. Telangana government had appointed its own Council and chairman adding to the confusion. The politicians and bureaucrats together had botched up the matters making life miserable for the students and their patents.

kamal committe-30

(File Photo)

Even the Union Government has been playing spectator without taking fast decisions regarding distribution of officers. Six months have passed since the two states have been formed, and the exercise by the committee appointed by the Centre to distribute the All India Services officers has not yet been completed. It might take another six months if things go at the same slow pace. There were hints in the air of allocation of officers to either AP or Telangana. This has been the source of uncertainty. Officers working for Telangana government presently but sure of moving to AP are not able to concentrate on the job on hand. Same is the case with the officers working in AP. A sense of finality is needed for the governments to concentrate on governance.

kcr

(File Photo)

While this is the sad state of affairs in the Telugu states, the chief ministers have been indulging in grandiose plans of developing their cities on lines of London, New York, Chicago and Singapore. Both the politicians belong to the same school. If the Telangana CM comes from a feudal background, the AP CM is from a community known for its enterprise and market-savvy attitude. Both have been waxing eloquent when it comes to implementing welfare measures, but their heart lies in market and foreign dreams. While KCR was promising to develop Karimnagar which elected him to Lok Sabha in 2004 into a London and Hyderabad into a New York, both he and Naidu are on the same page as far as love for Singapore is concerned. Both want to fashion the development of their region on lines of Singapore which has no geographical or demographical resemblance with the Telugu states. While AP and Telangana have farmers or farm labourers comprising 60 percent of the population, Singapore has no farmers to speak of. How can the Telugu states copy Singapore is a question that is never discussed. The politicians and officials in both the states are enamoured of the chief ministers and no one dares to say anything against their masters. The latest crazy idea in KCR’s wild dreams is to build skyscrapers around Hussain Sagar Lake which is sought to be emptied and cleaned before filling with pure water. A skyscraper taller than the 2,722-foot-tall Burj Khalipha of Dubai is dreamed by Telangana CM. He wants to build such towers around the historic lake as the towers are there on the bank of Hudson river in New York. KCR has also promised to build three more airports in Hyderabad. He has just cleared a Rs 800 crore proposal to improve Rajiv Rahadari between Hyderabad and Karimnagar. Besides this, he has repeatedly assured the people of a highly expensive water grid to supply driking water to all the villages in Telangana state.

japanCompared to the dreams of KCR, Naidu’s dreams are crazier and more colourful. He told the people of AP that he intends to build three international airports at three mega cities of Vijyawada, Vizag and Tirupati besides 14 airports across the state. First he thought of Singapore as a model, then shifted to Putrajaya near Kuala Lumpur and again to Chicago. He is drifting back to Singapore again. Naidu is planning for 13 seaports along 1000 km long coast. Most important dream is about the capital city to be built in 30,000 acres at a cost of a whopping Rs 1, 13, 000 crore between Vijayawada and Guntur. He is also planning for IT corridor between Kakinada and Vizag at an expense of Rs 30,000 crore. Naidu is just back from a five-day visit to Japan. He said he would be visiting the country once in every six months. He is confident of wooing huge investments from Japan. In the meanwhile, KCR has got an invitation to visit China. The competition between the two gladiators goes on in every aspect.

dry land1-18In his single-minded focus on building a world-class capital, Naidu is prepared to force the farmers to forfeit their lands for a package he is offering. The process of taking over the farmlands is going to be difficult with many farmers refusing to fall in line. But he would not give up.

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