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The Trouble With Telangana

The Trouble With Telangana

March 01, 2011

Everything you wanted to know about Telangana but were too afraid to ask.

One of the most important and complicated issues facing modern India is the Telangana issue. To understand the movement, it is essential to review the history of modern India that surrounds the region of Telangana.

In 1947, immediately after independence, a process of political integration of India started. The iron man of India, Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel took charge to forge a united India from the 565 princely states and British-era colonial provinces. Most of the princely states agreed to join the state of independent India, except Kashmir, Junagadh, and Hyderabad. Telangana was a part of the Hyderabad state.

The Nizam of Hyderabad wanted his State to remain independent. India feared this, and the formation of another Pakistan within India. Hindus rebelled throughout the state against the Nizam's rule and his army. The Nizam's army, in opposition, massacred many rebels and innocent people. Numerous mass assassinations, similar to the Jallianwala Bagh massacre took place throughout the state, until the bloodshed was finally stopped by the Indian Army. The state of Hyderabad was won, and the Nizam was overthrown.

In 1953, the States Reorganization Commission (SRC) was appointed to create new states in India based on language. It was proposed that the Hyderabad state be split into three regions. Apart from regions being given to the states of Bombay state (Maharashtra) and Mysore (Karnataka), a major region (Telangana) along with the capital city of Hyderabad, merged with the Andhra state.

The SRC objected to Telangana being assimilated into the state of Andhra, despite of their common language. The then Chief Minister of Hyderabad State, Burgula Ramakrishna Rao, claimed that majority of people were against the merger. But Congress had its own plans. In 1956, the proposed split was executed. A matrimonial alliance with great potential for divorce was formed.

Citizens of Telangana never seemed happy with the new ‘state’ (pun intended!) of affairs. Cries for separation ensued. The first battle for separation erupted in 1969 under the leadership of Marri Chenna Reddy. This rebellion was suppressed by Congress. Since then, this part of India has always been in a state of unrest.

In the 1990s, BJP promised a separate Telangana state, if they came to power. Well, BJP did come into power but never stood up to their promise. Meanwhile, a new party called Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS), led by Kalvakuntla Chandrashekar Rao (KCR), was formed in 2001. Their single-point agenda was to create a separate Telangana state with Hyderabad as its capital.

After numerous other demands for Telangana, before 2004 elections, Congress befriended TRS and promised Telangana to them. After winning the elections, Congress rescinded their offer. In 2006, TRS withdrew their support from the Congress but it didn’t make any difference, due to the huge majority held by Congress. The same story was repeated in the 2009 general elections.

By the end of 2009, disappointed by Congress, KCR went on hunger strike. Congress initially accepted TRS’s demands but then denied them again (for the 5th time!), this time due to issues with their own Members of Parliament from Andhra Pradesh. So, Telengana is an issue that has been brewing for a long time, but highlighted and exploited by numerous political parties for petty political motives.

About a year ago, the government announced the five-member Srikrishna committee that would explore the issue of forming a separate state of Telangana. The committee recommended that the State remains unified, and further advised numerous constitutional and economic reforms in the region.

Politics apart, what about the people of the region? Well, as a matter of fact, of the 34 districts in India which face acute farm distress, nine are in Telangana. The budget allocations to Telangana are generally less than 1/3 of the total Andhra Pradesh budget. In most years, funds allocated to Telangana are never spent. Telangana separatist leaders claim that only 20% of the total Government employees, 10% of employees in the secretariat, and 5% of department heads in the Andhra Pradesh government are from Telangana. Even the Srikrishna committee could not deny these allegations due to lack of data. If even half of the allegations are true, the situation is really disheartening.

Under these circumstances, should a separate state of Telangana be formed? If you take Jharkhand’s example, it’s a straight ‘no’. If you take Uttarakhand’s example, it’s a ‘yes’. Does the creation of a separate state help? It definitely does under the right governance. Will the Congress Members of Parliament from Andhra revolt? Laalu claimed that he will allow Bihar’s division only over his dead body. Well, Bihar is divided and Laalu is still alive and kicking. And he still supports Congress! Nothing will change. Life for a politician, goes on. Only the common man suffers.

I personally don’t believe in the idea of division. But, democracy is all about majority and public opinion. People of the area clearly seem to want a separate state of Telangana. While the country at large seems to deny their demands. What's your opinion? Should a separate state of Telengana be formed? Do post your comments below


  • telugodu
    12.03.12 10:37 PM
    We want separate country for telugu people.We are 130 million people spread across all over andhra tamilnadu orissa karnataka maharastra.
  • Bidyut
    12.10.11 08:32 PM
    To all those separatists, you guys are not really thinking through all aspects of this separation, I think most of the people are just obsessed with it and based on discussions seen here, it looks like they are not ready to open up their minds to others suggestions. I request you guys to spend sometime alone and think what do you want to achieve and what are you going to really get from this. don't let anyone else lead your thoughts or actions. Think like an INDIAN and do what's best for our country. is it too much to ask to work together. I am not Telegu but I am Indian so think like that and why are we fighting among ourselves. IT IS ALWAYS EASY TO BREAK SOMETHING RATHER THAN MAKE SOMETHING. like the old saying when two cats fight, monkey in the middle wins. Let us all work together build a better telugu rather Indian state and be a role model for other states. I am niether from Telangana nor from Andhra but I am not in favor of separation. I only fight for common people because common man are always good not like Politicians (They are inhuman)
  • Bidyut
    12.10.11 08:18 PM
    To all the citizen of India , I have a humble request that think like an Indian. Politician always exploited the situations to earn fill their bank lockers and their political seats . So dont expect any sympathy from cetral or state because if you think like idiot then you deserve to be treated like idiot forever .
  • Arun
    25.09.11 08:56 PM
    the author needs to study about the history of kannadigas first ..
    it is pointless to provide wrong info about a state of which he hardly seems to know anything ...
  • ramu
    18.09.11 11:24 AM
    the telangana issue is come in to mainly after y s death.
    If dont stop this agitations hyderabed and AP will loss the fame. Already the development is stopped.

    Just look other states like maharastra, TN,Gujarat how to develop with unity.

    If the region is not developed this mistake is the leaders and that voters. They fail to elect good leaders.

    Due to saparation any plase will not develop.
  • charu
    01.09.11 07:33 PM
    It is absolute ignorance of the matter to say that Telangana agitation is created by media. It is prevalent from the time of independence, took its ugliest turn during 1969-70 which was thoroughly and with a stern hand curbed by the then Chief Minister Brahmananda Reddy. Prime Minister Indira Gandhi tried to solve the problem with 6 point formula within the framework of Andhra Pradesh by making a telangana leader Marri Chenna Reddy the Chief Minister. But the worst part was that this formula was twisted to the extent that it was not implemented in toto. It was to be suitable and favourable to the Andhras. As a result the 15 year domicile was brought down to 4 years and was called local candidate certificate. This was a tight slap on the face of telangana as the purpose of admissions in the universities and opportunities for govt employment was lost for the next forty years and it is still the same even today. All the outsiders calling themselves local candidates made a fortune for themselves at the cost of the telanganites.

    It is a sad story as they also being a part of telugu speaking are considered as downtrodden in their own region. This goes back to the seven generations of Muslim rule which made them slaves in their own house and then the British domination which left the telanganites no where and now the ultimate rulers who don't want to leave Hyderabad as they have made it a heaven for themselves in making money. The prosperity lies with the Andhras, the education they have grabbed by grabbing the university seats by twisting the govt rules in their favour. They do not leave a single opportunity to suppress the telanganites and that too working democratically because they have a majority in the legislative assembly!!

    HYDERABAD! HYDERABAD! HYDERABAD! The city is almost located in the cetre of the region. Geographically it belongs to none other than this region. All the structures that are found in here are built historically by the then rulers using the sources and resources from the telangana people and their region. Only the telanganites have the right to claim the city. Who has built the famous monument Charminar and with whose resources? Osmania University, Osmania hospital, Tank bund, Nizam’s Institute of Medical Sciences, the majestic Residency now Women’s College, Legistlative Assembly are all built by the money and labour of the people of this region. The hi-tech city is a cosmopolitan culture coming up in the form of business and development and is not identified with any particular people responsible for it. There are business houses who have contributed from all the corners of our country. The employees have poured in from every part of our nation and are working towards the national development. If one talks about the flyovers, greenery, the national high ways that pass the region, again it is a part of lateral development of all the cities in India which are striving to develop competitively towards growth. Yes, the International Airport is a unique imitation of international standards built away from the city at the expense of city people bringing in the inconvenience to them at its best. The facility providers make the best of their income by taxing the people. Most of the latest malls, jewellery outlets, latest hospitals, hi-fi schools are nothing but commercially oriented and money centred organisations who in the name of development are interested in making themselves rich.

    The land that is acquired from the government for any developmental or business activities by the seemandhra business people in and around the twin cities of Hyderabad is public property. Though they have invested the money the land belongs to the telangana region. No one can claim it as owned by anyone.

    The people in all the districts of Telangana have schools without proper teachers, have a couple of universities without the required standard, have hospitals without the specialists and appropriate equipments. For all these basic necessities they have to run to Hyderabad and people who can't afford leave themselves to fate. The people of Telangana were ignored and dominated by outsiders and if they rise to rebel for their constitutional right to freedom where lies the fault? Whatever any govt does it may suppress but can never win over. This is going to repeatedly raise its head in the coming times.

    The conplacency of the centre and the state to take a dynamic step to declare Telangana as a separate state shows the incompetency of the centre. Telanganites have birth right to rule themselves after the Muslim, the British and now Andhra suppression continuously since 700 years. This is a legitimate demand. Andhras have proved since independence for the last six decades that they are ruling with utter selfish interest. Otherwise this problem would never have occurred. The root cause of the problem lies with the misrule of andhras. Separate them and things will fall in place.

    Nothing much is done by Andhra to develop the city as they claim. It was a city with all the requirements of a capital and it still remains the same. All structures were established before they thronged the city few decades back. In the hi-tech city the companies belong to outsiders. The land belongs to Telangana which was provided by the Andhra govt. Andhras have established businesses and are making money at the cost of telangana people. Is that development? Surely not.

    Solve their problem by allowing them to rule themselves. The problem will be solved. There will be peace and harmony in all the areas.
  • Ramesh
    14.08.11 12:45 PM
    I am amazed at your stupidity in writing such a superficial and tendentious piece on such an important subject.
    First, you don't seem to know even a bit of AP history and culture. Second, you have liberally lifted all that vicious propaganda doled out by the separatists.
    I will just mention three points to expose your utter ignorance about the complicated issue.

    a) The SRC did not 'object' to merger of Andhra and Telangana. They actually said everything is in favour of a merger. They only recommended that the merger should happen 5 years later after the general elections.
    b) BRK Rao was not against merger. In fact, he was the one who sacrificed his political future by pushing for Visalandhra.
    c) Your take on T backwardness is entirely lifted from T websites. SKC, after a thorough study, concluded that Rayalaseema and North Coastal Andhra are the most backward regions in Andhra Pradesh, not Telangana.

    The rest of your garbage is also heavily influenced by the T spam on the net.
    Finally, talking about 'majority and public opinion', are you prepared for an independent state of Hyderabad, if the majority of the Hyderabadis vote for it in a referendum?
    The Moral of the Story: Don't rush where Angels fear to tread!
  • srini
    26.03.11 12:56 AM
    Ap assembly has 294 seats, out of which 175 belong to SeemAndhra and 119 to Telangana! In democracy nos matters and the minority Telanagna region has been playing second fiddle in getting opportunities across the state, politcial admin, jobs/ education and unable to stop SeemAndhra Hegemony bcos of lesser no of Assembly seats.

    Hight time, this dirty game of politics is stopped. In AP, Telangana will never get their justice.

    Jai Telangana State.
  • buda
    25.03.11 10:44 PM
    i agree with democracy ,which is Y i feel we should let kashmir join pakistan and Tamilnadu be an Independent country and Arunachal pradesh be given back to china and a part of Assam be allowed to join bangladesh this is what the majority people want.
  • reddy
    14.03.11 03:22 PM
    In 1997, the state unit of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) passed a resolution seeking a separate Telangana.Though the party created the states of Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh, and Uttarkhand in 2000, it could not create a separate Telangana state because of lack of consensus with the Telugu Desam Party, which extended outside support to its government at the centre
  • Vijay
    05.03.11 01:06 PM
    Roadmap for peaceful settlement of Telangana Issue
    1. Cause of agitation:
    Non-implementation of Gentleman’s agreement and 610 GO and Mulki rules
    Secondary reasons are: Unfair distribution of wealth, water, and cultural and historical differences.

    2. Stakeholders in favour of separate status:
    Politicians, Students, Employees, Common People – Directly
    Expat NRIs – Indirectly

    3. Why the arguments for split is not justifiable:
    Recently concluded Sri Krishna Committee’s report clearly shows that there is no deficiency in development and distribution of opportunities and wealth in Telangana vis-à-vis the rest of the state. Development has been at par and at times better than the rest of the state.
    Since, development has been taken care of during the last 50-60 years non-implementation of Gentleman’s agreement does not have much relevance as the goal of the agreement was to safeguard development and distribution of wealth and opportunities.
    The only issue though is the non-implementation of the 610 GO and Mulki rules. But this issue can be resolved and it does not warrant a split in the state.
    Dealing with water sharing would be more difficult with separate states than it is in an united state, hence this is not a solution for water sharing as well.

    It appears that for the common people (barring the politicians, expat NRIs), it is more of an emotional issue between the regions and not socio-political.

    4. Why there is a need to find a solution without further delay:
    The fire is simmering and becoming bigger and bigger everyday. The chances of it getting out of control are raised because of rumours and misinformation which is fed to the people by way various channels. (print, electronic etc. etc.). This is also bound to cause confusion, chaos, bitterness and hatred between people of different regions.

    5. How a solution can be arrived at:
    Establish a regional council as suggested by the Sri Krishna Committee, which will oversee the problem of implementation of Mulki rules etc. over a period of 10 year (recommend a fixed time frame instead of indefinite tenure)
    This will also oversee government spending to remove bias. The reports should be published regularly to showcase transparency.
    Have discussion with all parties (different regions) individually to create an atmosphere of reconciliation.
    Promise/release a package (to be issued over a period of 5 years), and strictly fulfil it.
    Seek support of TRS and TDP to diffuse the situation – Would need excellent negotiation.

    6. Long term solution:
    Rename the united state to Telangana.
    This would achieve several long term benefits. (but would require the support of other regions and convince them that they lose nothing but just a name; but on the other hand they would win hearts)
    This would create harmony and remove bitterness and this is essential since although the regions were united as a state but the regional barriers were always there and issue could open up time and again and exploited (by various kinds of forces).
    By renaming it we can ensure that this issue is buried for ever, and we can remove the stigma of backwardness from Telangana region. (Although it’s not true that it is backward and it is equally forward or backward as any other region in the united state, whichever way we may look at it).
  • Laxman
    02.03.11 10:01 PM
    Language is a non-issue, it can't bind people together. If that's the case then Chhattisgarh and Jharkhand wouldn't have been separate states. Even the people of Telangana, who want a separate state share the samelanguage as the people of coastal Andhra.
    The Andhraiites oppose the creation of Telangana not because of their love for Telugu or the idea of an United Andhra. Given an assurance that Hyderabadw will be a UT or will go to them, they won't give a damn wether Telangana is formed or not. They fear that they will lose jobs, property and a Pan India symbol. They feel that they have done the hardwork in developing Hyderabad, so it is theirs. But they don'task themselves a question that why is it that, in the first place they chose to invest in Hyderabad rather than in any other town of Andhra Pradesh.There must be something in Hyderabad which other towns of Andhra lacked, that attarcted the money andtalent there. So it's not that they havedone someselfless service in developing the city.
    I wouldsay that Telangana should be formed because, from the beginning theere has been a publicsupport in Telangana for a separatestate and the reason behind the Coastal Andhraites opposition to the state is only because of one city and not the welfare of the state.
  • Prashna Jawabu
    Prashna Jawabu
    02.03.11 01:25 AM
    Why are you spreading lies man?
  • srikanth
    01.03.11 11:14 PM
    in a democratic country like india peoples wishes are to be given respect....then definetely a state should be granted..and cumng on to the united ap issue its definetely a kind of meaningless movement..bcoz when a section a ppl are saying that we cant live along with them how can they force those people to be with them..if they cliam that the development in hyd is all due to their investments no one can help it....hyd was made a capital of ap as it is rich enough in everything in those days itself..if they had invested in hyd its all because it is a capital one has a r8 on a capital city if it is problem for them they can agree for seperate telangana along with hyd and use hyd as a united capital for few years till they form their own capital city......this is an easy solution to the problem if every one thinks in a broad would be better if everyone along with the united ap supportes know this fact and stop troubling the common man.........a common man is the one who is ultimately loosing everything due to such issues
  • Sourav Roy
    Sourav Roy
    01.03.11 05:16 PM
    I agree with you that it depends upon the right governance.Now how to make an estimate of that.If you take Jharkhand's example its a state of scheduled tribes where top political positions are held by people who do not qualify.Arjun Munda,Babulal Marandi,Shibu Soren etc all fall into this category.The fact that they lead a state with very less education and awareness doesn't help the cause either.Result is before us.Though I should not generalize it still I am sure making some sense.
    Though I feel that backward section of society needs to be uplifted but, As long as reservations in institutions exist, development will always take a back seat and political parties like congress will play dirty game of reservation and do permanent damage to the system.
    Its like in a faulty selection procedure wrong people get selected ,they further cripple the process and make way for more bad selections.Its a vicious circle which is only getting stronger.
    I FEEL THE DIVERSITY WE HAVE IS NOT A BOON BUT A BANE.No other country has this situation.More focus on the differences will only worsen the scenario.Convergence towards common culture is desired.Else India will always be a in jelly state which will neither collapse nor stand tall to develop to the full potential.
    I fantasize of a revolution like the one in Egypt which will destroy the political system and bring a less complex political structure like having one or two parties which will stop politicians taking advantage of our diversity.
  • raghukulesh
    01.03.11 04:23 PM
    hmm ...well man , two imp linesu said " Everything you wanted to know about Telangana " & "the history of modern India that surrounds the region of Telangana." .... literally u dint speak a bit of it ... these ppl from other parts of andhrapradesh claim that they 've made a such a huge development of the region thats totally bullshit ... they 're basically capitalists and alien respectors.....
    but the actual thing is ... the hyderabad state was so developed and rich in the world that ...the last nizam king of hyderabad is all time 5th wealthiest in the world ..... inthe list in which bill gates stands 20th ..... they purely think they brought IT revolution to our city ...but then think if our state prevailed.... we wud be on the top of the world takin into account wealth we had .... . they totally exploited us ...thats the fact .....
    and one more thing hyd or telangana was so developed in all aspects ... it was in our prncely hyd state, the second established railways in the country and we got electricity well before madras state in 1890's ... we had very well plans of irrigation canals ...and diversion schemes ....
    keeping everything in mind ...the one who has got greymatter has to agree for the cause.... .
    Mr.NRI imagine ppl coming to india from abroad like u went thr ..... that wud have actually happened ...
    but in the capitalist and political interests we lost everything ..... it was the indian national congress then .... and it is indian national congress now ..... and it wud be damn silly if anyone calls themselves patriot respecting respecting "gandhi,nehru,INC"!!!!!
    was thr any reason for bifurcation of India ??? its simple gandhi wanted nehru to take power ....they had no way out ...but bifurcation politically ... they wud bifurcate or unite things for their own political causes ...but not in interests of prosperity ....

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