Iron in our souls

Graphic: Anki Reddy

By: Vijayshree Kurumilla

Somehow the feeling of elation is not sinking in and I do not think, I would be happy, until the parliament passes, the bill for separation of Telangana. This is in contrast, to the undiluted joy that we felt, when the announcement, came in the wake of KCR’s fast, on December 9th, 2009. We were so happy then, at having saved KCR’s life and at the same time, realizing our long cherished dream.

Our daily prayers seem, to have been answered, then and we celebrated like small children. But it did not take, even 24 hours for the scene to be reversed; Chandra Babu Naidu came on television, accusing Chidambaram from Tamil Nadu and Veerappa Moily from Karnataka, for taking a decision without taking into consideration anyone’s opinion and that too, in the midnight. He knew well the decision came, after a resolution was passed, by the all party meeting, approving the division.

The Congress government took a U turn and kept the issue, in a backburner. Yet, we did not lose hope, Sri Krishna Committee was going to do justice to us, we thought. But how, were we to know that even justice can be bought and the same committee will write a secret chapter, to manage and crush the movement.

Our students were dying, in front of our eyes and all of them writing, in their dying declarations that, ‘Ours should be the last death.’
I would daily look into the night skies and look at the stars and think, our martyrs had become one. Tears flowed when Yadaiah died, saying ‘I have a small wish and that is Telangana’ and Yadi reddy went and hung himself to the tree in front of parliament, thinking that the people in Delhi can surely not ignore death ,when it, happens so close to them. But the heart of the government did not melt.

That is when, the tears, in our eyes dried out and our soul was slowly, turning into Iron. This iron in our soul made our resolve grow, with time and all the dramas unfolding before our eyes, every time the government wanted to manipulate us, failed to hoodwink us.

With the elections approaching, we have steeled ourselves; into facing a barrage of vitriolic campaign from the Seemandhra media to tarnish, the image of our only hope and that is, in the rise of a political identity of our own-TRS.

The wind slowly began to blow on our side, two things came to our aid, one was the coalition era politics, where every seat will count and the other- TRS was emerging as an unchallenged political party in Telangana.

Democracy in a way, has been turned around, with the regional parties calling the shots and now we have the answer often put to us, by the likes of Andhra Jyothi, Radhakrishna, that, ‘With 100 MLA seats and 15 MP seats, how will you, be able to get Telangana?’. Like a slap on his face, the answer has come.

I am waiting for the bill to be passed in parliament, before I will believe in a Congress which has reduced us to electoral numbers and in a way, answered Radhakrishna’s question quicker than we imagined, it to happen.

Yes, there is Iron in our souls and yet, it has kept us on the path, to Telangana in a democratic way. In 1969, when the students were killed in the agitation and their cause was betrayed, their souls must have turned to Iron too, but their path led to Naxalism. Ours did not, but unfortunately for our young friends, it made them give up their lives, with a firm resolve that their lives were not bigger than Telangana.

I am happy that no more lives, will be lost and that all those who had taken part in the 1969 movement and seen their friends, shot dead in front of their eyes, will now know, peace. Most importantly, the war that I always thought went on, between the KBR statue and the Martyr’s memorial has finally ended and the souls of the Martyr’s have won.

We will now lead our lives like ordinary people and not someone, whose lives were stolen from them. We will live in freedom and rebuild our state into the one, everyone dreamt of. When we will see our next generation, grow under, no shadow of discrimination and prejudice, we will think of all our dead martyrs and be thankful to them, for it. Then, may be the iron in our soul will melt and turn to, blossom, into innocence and joy in living, the way we want to, again.

The caged bird of Telangana is finally, breaking free and may it soar in its flight and breathe, in its new found freedom.

Jai Telangana!

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