PC seeks co-operation to end Telangana stalemate

Last Updated: Tuesday, January 5, 2010 - 15:38

New Delhi: Home Minister P Chidambaram
on Tuesday appealed to political parties in Andhra Pradesh to help
the central government find a solution to the Telangana issue
and made a subtle hints that Maoists would be happy if they
fail to find a solution.

In his opening statement at a meeting of eight
recognised political parties from Andhra Pradesh, he said the
agenda is to "deliberate on the mechanism and lay down a road
map for the consultations".

"I urge each of the political parties represented here
to show accommodation and goodwill. Ultimately you must find
the answers and you must help the central government find a
solution."

He said though the agenda for the meeting may appear
limited he was confident that "if we take one step at a time
we will, eventually, find a solution".
The Minister asked the parties to give their views on
what is the mechanism and the road map for consultation among
parties and groups.

Apparently hinting at Maoists, he said "I wish to
caution all political parties that there are forces waiting on
the wings who ridicule parliamentary form of democracy and who
would be happy if we collectively fail to find answers to the
issues that concern us and we should not give any room for
these forces to gain strength or credence."

Andhra Pradesh chief minister K Rosaiah, TRS leader K
Chandrashekhar Rao, actor-turned-politician and PRP
leader Chiranjeevi and his associate C Ramachandraiah, K S Rao
and Uttamkumar Reddy (both Cong) and Y Ramakrishna Du and R
Prakash (both TDP) are among those attending the meeting.

Andhra Pradesh BJP unit chief Bandaru Dattareya and
his colleague Hari Babu, B V Raghavalu and J Rangareddy
(CPI-M), K Narayanan and Malesh (CPI) and Asaduddin Owaisi and
Akbaruddin Owaisi of MIM are also attending the deliberations.

Chidambaram said while the parties deliberate on
issues and take forward the process of consultations, they
must recognise the fundamental importance of restoring
normalcy in Andhra Pradesh.

"There must be a halt to agitations and bandhs. Law
and order must be maintained. Children must go to schools and
colleges. People must be allowed to carry on their normal day-
to-day activities," he said.

The minister said government must be able to focus on
development and welfare of the people and it was in the
interest of all sections of people of Andhra Pradesh that
peace and harmony prevail while consultations take place.

"Let us demonstrate the strength of our democracy and
the capacity of our political parties to resolve differences
and find solutions," he said.

At the outset, Chidambaram also sought to dispel a
number of misconceptions which he said were there on the
Telangana issue.
"There is a misconception that the central government
acted in haste; that the political parties were not consulted;
and that I, as Home Minister, acted as an individual. As you
are all well aware, none of these misconceptions is supported
by facts, but I shall not waste your time refuting these
conceptions," he said.

The meeting comes a day after hectic consultations
involving Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and his cabinet
colleagues on the Telangana issue even as the TRS chief
demanded an immediate Parliament law to facilitate formation
of a separate state.

Singh had discussed the issue with senior colleagues
Pranab Mukherjee (Finance), P Chidambaram (Home), A K Antony
(Defence) and Veerappa Moily (Law).

Rosaiah, who had arrived here yesterday to participate
in the meeting, had met Chidambaram and followed it up with
another meeting with the Prime Minister."I am not here to give
any solution. I will attend the meeting as Chief Minister".

Chandrasekhar Rao has demanded that the Centre should
follow up on its promise to create separate Telangana.

"The Government has announced its policy on Telangana.
It should follow it up with Constitutional process. A
resolution should be moved in Parliament," he told reporters
after meeting CPI general secretary A B Bardhan yesterday.

PTI



First Published: Tuesday, January 5, 2010 - 15:38

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