New Delhi: In a bid to counter Bahujan Samaj Party chief Mayawati’s plan to divide Uttar Pradesh, the Congress on Wednesday hit back saying the second State Reorganization Commission (SRC) be constituted first before such a move.
Speaking to reporters in the national capital, Congress general secretary Digvijay Singh said, “Our policy regarding the bifurcation of the state is very open. We demand the formation of a State Reorganization Commission before the division of the state.”
He is also believed to have told reporters that the recommendations of the SRC would be important and it will also help in the equitable allocation of the central assistance required for the all-round development of newly carved states.
Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mayawati wants the state to be trifurcated into Bundelkhand, Poorvanchal, and Paschimanchal (or, Harit Pradesh, or western Uttar Pradesh).
Mayawati has already written to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in this regard. Political observers see Mayawati’s demand as a move to counter the Congress party’s campaign to get stronger in Uttar Pradesh, which has put pressure on her.
However, these observers believe that Mayawati certainly does not want the liquidation of Uttar Pradesh, which is her stronghold. It is possible that, through her demand for three new states, she is hoping that her party, the BSP, can rule three states, instead of one state in which the party is in power now.
Political analysts are of the opinion that the big size of the state makes its governance difficult with the state stretching from the outskirts of Delhi to Bihar, and touching Madhya Pradesh, Haryana and Rajasthan.
In 2001, a new state called Uttarakhand was carved out of the prized hilly regions of Uttar Pradesh.
At present, Uttar Pradesh has 80 Lok Sabha constituencies – which means there are 80 Members of Parliament, and thus the state becomes a deciding factor in the formation of any government at the Centre.
The Congress and the BJP have severely criticized Mayawati for having written a fresh letter to the Prime Minister demanding its trifurcation.
Pramod Tiwari, leader of the Congress Legislature Party in Uttar Pradesh Assembly, dubbed Mayawati’s move as a “political gimmick”. Hriday Narain Dixit, vice-president of the Uttar Pradesh unit of the BJP, slammed Mayawati for writing letters to the Central government “for all problems”.
Meanwhile, Ajit Singh, the president of the Rashtriya Lok Dal (RLD), has threatened to launch an agitation if the demand to form Harit Pradesh out of western Uttar Pradesh is not met.