PC seeks co-operation to end Telangana stalemate
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Last Updated: Tuesday, January 05, 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.


First Published: Tuesday, January 05, 2010, 15:38

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