London: Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) president Nitin Gadkari has supported the demand for a separate Telangana state and assured the protagonists of the cause that his party will fulfil the long-standing aspirations of the people of the region if it returns to power.
The BJP has always been in favour of smaller states and was the first national political party which adopted a resolution for a separate Telangana state if elected to power, Gadkari said while addressing an impressive gathering of the Telangana Development Forum, UK, here Sunday evening.
He accused the ruling Congress Party for the present crisis in Andhra Pradesh where legislators belonging to the region from different political parties including the ruling Congress have resigned in support of their "just and reasonable demand".
Gadkari alleged that the Congress was continuing with its delaying tactics by sitting over the recommendations of the Justice Srikrishna Commission which was asked to look into the issue. He assured the pro-Telangana activists that the BJP, when in power at the centre, will complete the proposed irrigation projects and undertake river connectivity programme for better water management of the Krishna and Godavari rivers.
"We will ensure proportionate water for Telangana and make it prosperous and economically viable state with improved agriculture and irrigation", Gadkari said amid laud applause. He said his party proposes to prepare a vision document for all-round progress and development of Telangana.
Speaking on the occasion, Smriti Irani, MP and president of the BJP Mahila Morcha, recalled that the mounting discontent and disillusionment among the protagonists of separate Telangana was first reflected in the movement organised by the students of Osmania University when they launched a protest against discrimination in government jobs against Telangana people more than 40 years ago.
The BJP president and his delegation visited the Swaminarayan temple, a gurudwara and a Sanatam Dharam Temple in Southall, an Indian dominated area of London.