K Chandrasekhar Rao, raised the bogey of separate statehood for Telangana, after he fell out of favour with the TDP leadership. The commencement of Telangana Rashtra Samithi was more of a self-employment scheme for the maverick politician. The perennial question is, what did KCR do to Telangana while he was in power and being a minister? The other valid question is, what moral right KCR has to whip up regional sentiments and inciting one region of the Telugu speaking people against the other?
In the 2004 general elections, no political analyst could predict the clean sweep of TDP. Even the Congress never expected a bounty of thundering majority. Had they had any such prior guestimate, they would never have gone into an electoral alignment with TRS. In spite of the seat sharing arrangement and with the anti-incumbency against TDP in full force, the TRS managed to win only 26 of the 61 seats they contested, which is not a testament of an overflowing Telangana sentiment all over the region. Even in the subsequent Municipal and Panchayat elections, the TRS had not fared well, which again proves that there is no all pervading T-sentiment.
For KCR and TRS, the mantra of separate Telangana is essentially that of political survival. The first separate Telangana agitation in the early seventies took shape because of the personal animosity between Kasu Brahmananda Reddy and Marri Chenna Reddy, where the later suspected the former played a proxy war to send him to political exile for six years. The primary goal of Chenna Reddy in dethroning Brahmananda Reddy from the CM’s chair had been achieved, while the Telangana issue took the back seat. Even the TRS took shape because of the personal rivalry between Nara Chandrababu Naidu and KCR. Like Chenna Reddy, KCR also succeeded in pulling down Naidu from power and the CM’s chair.
To reassert his commitment to Telangana, he went on resigning and recontesting purportedly to show the strength of the T-sentiment. Out of the 26 TRS MLAs, 10 have long back separated from the party protesting against the autocratic traits of KCR. With the present by-polls the TRS is down to 7 seats from 16 and less than the rebel TRS group of 10.
There has been severe dissident activity in Congress particularly, from the leaders from the Telangana region. There are reports that these Telangana dissidents had been hand in glove with KCR to remove YS Rajasekhar Reddy from the CM’s position and install Jaipal Reddy in the powerful seat. It is now obvious that the Telangana leaders have grossly overestimated the sentiment factor and they paid for it.
The by-election results prove, to some extent, the existence of Telangana sentiment in some pockets of the region, but very clearly prove that Separate Telangana Sentiment does not exist. Thank God, for it. Let there not be bloodshed among brothers of the same tongue on the issue of separation, not because a majority of people want it, but because a minority of politicians want it.
Why not politicians of all parties come together and rededicate themselves to the total development of Telangana.? Almost all leaders from Telangana, irrespective of the party they belong to, are stinking rich. Why not share some of their secrets of making money with the people of Telangana? After all, isn’t backwardness lack of riches and development is raising the living standards of people, which means they have more money now than before?
– Deen Kumar