Editorial: Lessons for Govt from Telangana
…in the case of bigger states like UP, Bihar, Gujarat, it seems rationale and practical. But demands of three states from a much smaller Assam, that too, on lines of different tribes inhabiting different areas is outrightly non-sensical. This trend is dangerous for the country in the longer run.A commission can effectively take care of all such issues…
Server protests against proposed Telangana state and identical demands of separate statehood reverberating for two days in various parts of the country are expectable. What goes beyond expected lines is en mass resignation by both TDP and Congress MLAs hailing from coastal Andhra and Rayalaseema regions and an identical step to be taken by state ministers, all belonging to ruling Congress party at the Centre. Congress-led UPA government’s decision to concede Telangana and subsequent loudest protests by its own legislatures and ministers from other two regions of Andhra Pradesh brings to light why Congress has put on hold TRS chief K Chandrasekhar Rao’s demand for long. But at the same time, it exposes Congress party’s apathy towards the issue, for now it’s obvious that it neither took necessary steps to avoid bifurcation of the state despite receiving the demand for long, nor did it work towards and make favourable background for creation of Telanagan. Its decision was one taken in urgency effected by Rao’s otherwise avoidable coercion. Prime Ministers Manmohan Singh’s remarks, made within 24 hours of government’s consent, that nothing will be done in a haste on Telangana are unlikely to achieve any damage control as expected by the Centre. Unlike other regions in the country demanding separate statehood, Telangana’s case is different in that it also involves state capital Hyderabad, where a large number of people from other two regions of the state have settled for long.
Separate statehood to a region is technically a positive thing. Where our government faltered was in not realizing the need of setting up another state reorganization commission to this day. For bifurcation of any state, there has to be a proper planning, a background needs to be made, public fears of other regions allayed. It is a time consuming process that should go on step by step. Centre’s unwillingness to yet not set up the commission to study creation of more states and, not to go for the move voluntarily could lead the country to identical situations in the future. We’ve heard voices of separate statehood from many regions in last two days. Many of them are genuine and many are not. In the case of bigger states like UP, Bihar, Gujarat, it seems rationale and practical. But when demands of creating three states from a much smaller Assam comes, that too, on lines of different tribes inhabiting different areas, it looks outrightly non-sensical. Also, we should not forget that we’re not creating more states just for the sake of good administration, we earlier created them on linguistic lines and now we’re out to create them on caste and tribal lines. This trend is dangerous for the country in the longer run. A commission can effectively take care of all such issues.
So, a proactive approach on part of government which involves serious actions for carving out essential states and positively addressing issues of those regions which do not so essentially require statehood is the need of the hour.