Muslims in Hyderabad oppose separate Telangana state
New Delhi: Muslims in Hyderabad, who constitute 41% of the population in the metropolis, do not want a separate state of Telangana to be created, the Srikrishna Panel said noting that they would feel more secure in the larger state of united Andhra Pradesh.
However, their community members in rest of the Telangana region are in favour of carving out a separate state from Andhra Pradesh as they feel they have remained backward in a united state and will have more access to educational and employment if a separate state is formed.
"Expectation of an increase in reservation benefits (to 12%) in the new state is one of the major reasons for their demand for separation," the Committee said in its 461-page report.
Currently, Muslims in Andhra Pradesh receive four per cent reservation benefits under the OBC (E) category.
In united Andhra Pradesh, Muslims have grievances like lack of jobs, non-implementation of Urdu as the second language, lack of Urdu teachers and funds for Urdu medium schools and absence of scholarships for minorities and the loss of waqf lands, the report said.
It said Muslims have told the panel that there is no communal or cultural divide between Hindus and Muslims in Telangana and they can live in harmony in a separate state.
Contrary to public perception, the report noted that according to Muslims, Telangana will not be unsafe for minorities.
"During field visits, however, a more nuanced viewpoint came out with people being unsure of the benefits of a separate state and articulating some apprehensions about their security in a separate Telangana," the committee said.
Muslims in Rayalaseema and coastal Andhra regions favour a united state. They believe that they should live together and share the resources of the state equitably, the report said.
Talking about Muslims in Hyderabad, the report says most Muslims of the city identify with the AIMIM as their political representative. They identify primarily with the city and not necessarily with the region of Telangana.
Muslims (in Hyderabad) would feel more secure in the larger state," it said in its analysis.
"Most of them reside in the old city and do not speak Telugu. Residents of Muslims mohallas were found to be the most disengaged from the Telangana issue.
"However, the concentration of Muslims in Hyderabad and their homogeneous distribution in Rayalaseema districts can explain their preferences which are mainly articulated by political groups and in Hyderabad city by the party," the panel said.
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