By: J R Janumpalli
In the backdrop of persistent common capital demand by Andhras in the event of formation of Telangana State, we need to know its outline and its implications. The idea of Andhras in common capital proposal appears to be Chandigarh model, where in either it will be a centrally administered ‘UT’ or of joint administration of both the partner states. Except in case of Punjab-Haryana, because of its distinct circumstance, such arrangement did not take place in other 13 state divisions in our country.
In the instances of construction of new capitals like Gandhinagar, Dispur, Raipur etc., the original capitals like Bombay, Shilling, Bhopal were not made common capitals, while the new capitals were getting ready. Wherever it was necessary, the Assembly, Secretariat and other state administration of the new state was run from the original capital till the requisite infrastructure is completed in the new capital city with some administrative arrangement. Even such arrangement was not there in Madras when our Andhra brothers were sent packing to Kurnool town. Almost all the states, when they were created, started using the new capital from day one. There is no reason to have common capital for a long time, waiting for new facilities to come up. Only state which took some time is Assam. It took one year to start using its new capital.
Our Andhra brothers conveniently forget the unceremonious rejection of their demand on Madras city in 1953. The historical spat between Gujarat and Maharashtra for Bombay city is too well known and is considered a paradigm for deciding the rights of native people on the original Capital city. There are quite a number of examples in the 14 cases of new states and the formation of their capitals to clearly indicate the inalienable rights of native people on the original capital city by its geographical situation.
Shillong which was the capital city of greater Assam went to Meghalaya because of its geographical location in the part of Meghalaya, like Bombay and Madras. Shimla was the capital of erstwhile Punjab and Himachal Pradesh from 1947 to 1960. Shimla went to its native Himachal Pradesh on the reorganization of Punjab State.
In all the 14 new states there was no covenant of common capital except in case of Chandigarh, which is straddling both the states on the border in the middle and was quite a suitable candidate for joint capital. It was an integral part of the undivided Punjab State. Punjab and Haryana were not merged earlier, like Hyderabad and Andhra states.
Hyderabad city is an integral part of Telangana. It was the capital of Hyderabad state since its birth and is situated in the center of Telangana more than 200 KM away from Andhra border. There is no rationale whatsoever in the demand of andhras except for their unbridled greed and political hegemony.
When Andhras were lobbying for merger with Hyderabad state, Pandit Nehru said it was the political imperialism of Andhras. Now, this conspiracy for common capital by Andhras is the very extension of the same political imperialism. The stranglehold of these political imperialists continues unabated on Congress party even today. Majority of our present Telangana Congress elements are reduced to political serfs to the party highcommand and are foolishly advocating granting common capital without realizing its implications. It will be another historical blunder; if it is agreed to. Telangana state without our sole sovereign authority on Hyderabad city is meaningless. Andhras can play havoc with our lives even with 5 years of common capital. But our nincompoop T-Congress leaders do not realize it and some of them are freely recommending 10 years of common capital to Andhras.
The Andhras’ concept of ‘common capital’ like their ‘Samaikyandhra’ slogan does not make any sense. This brazen desire could not manifest for them in Madras, where they lived for more than 150 years. The city was on the border of Andhra and Tamilnadu. There was 36% of Andhra population which is double to their presence in Hyderabad now. Whereas, they are living in Hyderabad city only for the last 55 years.
In other new states also the concept of common capital as concocted by Andhras was never considered. The very idea is a product of reprehensible Andhra chauvinism. Creating a new entity of common capital ‘denovo’ for the sake of Andhras and their continued hegemony, is undemocratic, against the time tested conventions and totally unwarranted. It is fraught with malicious political consequences.
The political leadership of Telangana of all parties should know this and do everything they can, to stop it. Lest they repeat the same mistake of their predecessors in 1956 and create another pestering problem to the posterity of Telangana people.