Here are the excerpts from an interview of TRS president K. Chandrasekhar Rao conducted by Economic Times
What is the current status of your movement?
I have received a message from Delhi that the Congress-led UPA government at the Centre is in favour of carving out Telangana state. The Centre has now realised that they cannot survive in the region without taking a decision in favour of a separate state. Congress chief Sonia Gandhi has always been in favour of Telangana.
How about agreeing to Hyderabad as common capital for both Telangana and the rest of Andhra Pradesh, similar to the Chandigarh model?
In the case of Chandigarh, both Punjab and Haryana share the borders. Here, you have to travel at least 200 km through anywhere in Telangana to reach Hyderabad. Telangana state without Hyderabad is not acceptable to us. It is a historical city and built with the sweat and blood of Telangana people. The Justice Srikrishna Committee has clearly said in its report that migrant people from Andhra region in Hyderabad are less than 7%, or around 5 lakh. People from Andhra region cannot lay claims on Hyderabad.
Will you continue to fight for Telangana entirely on your own or will you consider joining hands with either Congress or TDP?
I am given to understand that Congress is keen on saving its prospects in the Telangana region, keeping in view its interests at the Centre. If Congress gives Telangana state along with Hyderabad without any hanky-panky, we will support them.
Will you merge with Congress or just support them?
The question of merger comes later. We will be supporting Congress if they give Telangana. Once they begin to talk to us on the subject, then the things will emerge. It can be a step-by-step process.
What are the indications you are getting from Congress at the Centre?
They say that they have taken a decision in favour of formation of Telangana along with Hyderabad. They plan to call us for discussions very shortly.
‘Very shortly’ sounds little vague, doesn’t it?
They said in a few weeks or so.