By: J R Janumpalli
On July 2, 2014 Telangana the 29th state of Indian Union has come in to existence. The residual A.P. with its 13 districts is separated. But even after one year after that the A.P.govt is still working from Telangana State and does not show any eagerness to move to A.P. in near future. It is on the pretext that Hyderabad is designated as common capital for 10 years in A.P.R.Act. Practically it is a govt. in exile from Hyderabad. It is some 250 kms away from the nearest border of A.P. and its entire government machinery is working from Hyderabad.
There are about 15 new states created in Indian union after independence. There was no common capital conception in all those earlier state formations. Chandigarh was the sole exception, as it was situated snug on the border of Punjab and Haryana. It was also made a ‘UT’ to make it function lawfully as common capital for the two states. But, it is not without its nagging political conflicts. Yet, being straddled on the border it is functioning as joint capital. It cannot be repeated here in these two new states, as the geographic setting is entirely different. Such dispensation here will not be pragmatic and it has no constitutional approval too. Two sovereign state governments cannot exercise equal governing power over it, as the adage goes ‘two swords cannot fit in to one scabbard’. Therefore common capital for 10 years is an irrational proposition.
Yet, the A.P. government, its politicians and their people in Hyderabad are enamored of common capital. They want all the 10 years of the period of the common capital and even more — if possible permanently. The government on the plea of lack of capital, the employees on the pretext of accommodation, facilities, HRA, children education etc. do not want to move out. The excess Andhra employees do not want to be allotted to A.P. and those allotted to A.P. want to be here till their retirement. The A.P. Government wants equal sovereign powers in the city. It wants to use the wobbly section 8 in the Act, which was incorporated just to give the reassurance to the presumed apprehensions, in a day to day administration as a regular statute. They do not take the division of the scheduled institutions seriously as per the Act. Andhra people from almost all the sections in Hyderabad are said to have a vested interest in the city and do not want to leave it. Of course; they can be here and enjoy the fruits of their enterprise legitimately like any other people from outside the state. But they do not like it. They want special privileges over others. There lies the problem.
With this backdrop, the A.P. government is running a government from Hyderabad. A common capital is provided in the Act to facilitate relocation and establishment of a new capital and for extending certain benefits under article 371-D. But, the government is not making much effort to relocate. The capital construction is also proceeding at a snail’s pace. The A.P. secretariat employees are not making it any secret to stay put in Hyderabad till their retirement. It is like tail wagging the dog. The government also is not making any serious effort to create necessary facilities to trans locate the secretariat. It gives an impression that may be the govt. tacitly supporting the recalcitrance of employee unions with an agenda of its own. If we go by some statements of A.P. CM and other government functionaries, government does not appear to leave Hyderabad for all the 10 years of its common capital tenure for obvious reasons. Some of the statements also smack of a hankering for ‘UT’. The never ending Kamalanathan and Sheela Bhide Committees proceedings and power, Water, Institutions serial litigations etc. All are suggesting a deliberate long drawn war of attrition even after division, between the two states foisted by A.P.
The breaking out of Cash-for-vote scandal is the high point of this war. It was not a simple buying of one MLA vote for the election of one MLC of TDP. Euphemistically saying, it appears to be a tip of the iceberg. The plot seems to be a much larger conspiracy to buy about 30 TRS MLAs to destabilize the maiden TS government. This scam brings out with a jolt the sinister designs of TDP and the A.P. government in Hyderabad. If we see at the range and scope of the scam, we may be forced to think that the 10 year common capital, the section 8 and other additions in the last minute melee of A.P.R.A. as restrictions to TS is an intentional political strategy to harass the new state. Now, A.P. Government conveniently ensconced in Hyderabad, istrying to use them one by one. But, these things will no way help A.P. state and its people struggling to find the moorings in the new state. The A.P. government remaining in Hyderabad for all the 10 years, might help TDP to promote itself in Telangana and may be useful to the vested interests of many Andhra elite who have established many business/ property empires at the cost of Telangana. But it will not help to take the residual A.P. state forward unhindered.
The civil society and people at large in A.P. are not comprehending the implicit implication in it. They are getting carried away by the negative propaganda by TDP now, as by all of their political parties before bifurcation. They are still in the hangover of the political indoctrination against bifurcation.By now it should have been understood that, the merger was an historical blunder. Telangana people were never happy with it. They opposed it in the beginning itself and were agitating against it incessantly. It is Andhra political leaders who have always manipulated and foiled theirefforts. By hindsight, it can be averred thatAndhra politicians are responsible for whatever bifurcation dejections are there for A.P.now. They should now realize that it is irrefutable and no use proselytizingon it anymore. And they should now embark on building their state with statesmanship, which chance their political leaders had abdicated between 1953 and 1956 itself, for their overriding political ambitions.
All the new states which were formed after 1956 proved that with a great measure of success. Gujarat, Haryana and Chhattisgarh states are some shining examples of it. Both Andhra and Telangana States would have been the front runners by now, if the forced merger has not taken place. They need to understand the futility and un-called for TDP’s political gamesmanship in Hyderabad and on the maiden TS government. It is a known fact that Chandrababu Naidu and TDP had stopped for four years the TS formation and caused inestimable suffering for the people of both states. It is time for them to behave responsibly now, at least for the sake of their own A.P.state.
Like those inappropriate vishalandhra and samaikyandhra slogans earlier now also their cry for sovereign power on Hyderabad sounds as the extension of their imperialistic design. In 1969 the agitation was suppressed by the killing of 369 people in police firing. In 1972 the mulki rulesupheld by Supreme Court were abrogated by Constitution amendment. All agreements, formulas, plansevolved periodically in the 58 years of united state to effect a level playing field, were observed in breach rather than in practice. The center wasmanaged every time to coerce Telangana in to submission. But this time fortuitously, because of the sacrifice of the lives of 1200 youth, a state is given. Albeit with many millstones around its neck as parting kicks, again at the manipulation of Andhra politicians. Now they are playing on those millstones remorselessly, as is their wont. The center as usual is continuing its standoff attitude, not helping TS proactively for its legitimate interests. They show unambiguous indications of not leaving Hyderabad and play threatening divisive politics to make Hyderabad a contentious issue, which can have very volatile consequences. In addition, even before the expiry of one year period, CBN’s government has unleashed a clandestine program to destabilize Telangana state by its alleged 200cr. cash-for-vote scheme, running his government from its territory. It is tantamount to treason.
Therefore the purported government ‘in exile’ in Hyderabad for 10 years appears to be a virtual breeding ground for spawning unsavory glitches for both the states. Instead of finding solutions to fictional problems, it has all the potential for getting entangled in to a Gordian knot by itself.