Jagan says his party respects Telangana sentiment

Facing the heat over statehood demand, YSR Congress president YS Jaganmohan Reddy said his outfit "respects the sentiment" of Telangana people.

Kadapa: Facing the heat over statehood
demand, YSR Congress president Y S Jaganmohan Reddy on Saturday said
his outfit "respects the sentiment" of Telangana people and
demanded that the Centre immediately take a "right decision"
on the contentious issue.

"We respect the sentiment of Telangana people but we
are neither in a position to grant statehood or block it.

"It is for the central government to take a right
decision that will not harm the interests of the people of
different regions (of Andhra Pradesh)," Jagan said, delivering
the valedictory address at the two-day plenary of his new
party at Rajiv Knowledge Valley this afternoon.
By spelling out his stand, though in a rather
ambiguous manner, Jagan tried to buy peace with the
pro-Telangana forces as he faced a lot of antagonism in the
region ever since he held aloft a placard in support of a
unified state in Lok Sabha when he was a Congress MP in 2010.

He was prevented from conducting his `Odarpu yatra` in
Warangal district, the hotbed of Telangana agitation, till he
came out with a clear view on the statehood demand.

The MP-elect lashed out at the central government for
"playing with the lives of people of Andhra Pradesh" for many
years now on the vexatious statehood issue.
"AP is in total chaos... people are ending lives...
properties are getting damaged. The Government is solely
responsible for this. It should stop playing this game at once
and take a right decision that does not harm the interests of
people of different regions and lead to further acrimony,"
Jagan demanded.

Chaos reigned at the plenary as YSR Congress workers
from Telangana and Andhra-Rayalaseema regions held aloft
placards and raised slogans for and against the bifurcation of
Andhra Pradesh.

Party leaders had a tough time pacifying the
slogan-shouting workers.

Those from Telangana demanded that Jagan immediately
announce the YSR Congress? stand on the separate state demand.

Congress MLA from Telangana region Konda Surekha
blamed her party for the current impasse.

"When he was alive, one party blamed then Chief
Minister Y S Rajasekhara Reddy for blocking the formation of
Telangana state. Now that YSR is no more, what is preventing
Telangana state from becoming a reality," she questioned, in
an oblique reference to the separatist Telangana Rashtra

Appealing to everyone to respect the sentiments of
Telangana people, Surekha said the entire country was eagerly
awaiting Jagan`s word on the statehood issue and concluded her
speech with the `Jai Telangana` slogan.

Another Congress MLA Adinarayana Reddy from Kadapa
district maintained that they still supported a unified Andhra
Pradesh but blamed his party for compounding the crisis over
the statehood issue.

Former Congress MLA Bajireddi Govardhan accused the
Congress of betraying the people of Telangana on the creation
of a separate state.