Hyderabad: Apparently caught on the
defensive, Congress leaders from Telangana today asserted that
they were serious about securing statehood to the region and
causing a political crisis through their resignations.
"If required, we are even thinking about breaking away
from the party," senior MLA and former home minister K Jana
Reddy announced even as the Congress came under attack over
its soft approach towards the Telangana issue.
In an emotionally-charged address after some ugly
scenes at a meeting of the Telangana Political Joint Action
Committee here this evening, Jana Reddy said Congress leaders
from the region were even "challenging" their high command
over the statehood issue.
"Being in a national party, we have certain
limitations but still we are challenging our leadership and
even doing some sacrifices," he said, referring to the
resignation of 50 MLAs and MLCs of the party.
"I have been in politics for many decades and led
lakhs of people on various issues. I served as minister for
many years and know well how to take an issue forward. But
allow us some time to draw the strategies," Jana Reddy said.
Nagarkurnool MP Manda Jagannadham said the 12 Congress
MPs from the region were "lobbying very hard" in New Delhi to
achieve Telangana state.
"The December 9 statement (the first one by Union Home
Minister P Chidambaram on Telangana) came only upon our
lobbying. Though the second statement (on December 23) was not
to our liking, we ensured that many objectionable portions in
it were deleted. We are exerting a lot of pressure in many
ways to effectively counter the Rayalaseema-Andhra MPs,"
Former minister R Damodar Reddy, who along with Jana
Reddy took an active role in cobbling up the JAC, said it was
not proper for anyone to target the Congress and belittle its
In an oblique reference to Dalit leader Manda
Krishna, who tried to run down Sonia Gandhi on the statehood
issue, Damodar Reddy remind that they were among the first
legislators from Telangana to tender their resignations after
the December 23 statement.
"We have remained very serious on our resignations
and not taken them back even after our high command directed
us do so. Telangana is important for us than posts," he
Telugu Desam Party leader M Narasimhulu too rebuked
Manda Krishna for criticising party chief Naidu on the
"When we are waging a joint struggle, targeting the
party leaders will only harm the cause," Narasimhulu warned.
Telangana political JAC convenor Kodandaram said
they were at a "historic turn" in the Telangana movement and
should hence shun our "deep differences" and surge unitedly to
achieve the goal.