Leaders of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the Communist Party of India (Marxist) (CPI-M) have expressed scepticism over Union Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde's statement that the government will announce its decision on the next steps on the Telangana statehood issue within a month.
Speaking after an all-party meeting on the issue on Friday, BJP spokesman Prakash Javadekar said: "The all-party meeting for the third time on the same issue without the ruling party making its own stand clear becomes a farce. We have as NDA committed to creation of separate state of Telangana, but we are asking the Congress what is their stand? They speak in double standards, they are speaking in two voices."
CPI-M leader D. Raja said: "Let us wait and see, what will be the outcome of today's meeting because several meetings of this nature have been called in the past but nothing concretely has emerged on the question of creating a separate state of Telangana. I must underline the fact, it is the Congress party, which is yet to take a stand on Telangana, and it is Congress party, which is responsible for subjecting the state of Andhra Pradesh into political turmoil repeatedly. If at all one party should be held responsible for the crisis in Andhra Pradesh that is the Congress party."
Earlier, Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) President K. Chandrasekhar Rao, popularly known as KCR, dismissed the all-party meeting as an absolutely futile exercise and a drama.
KCR expressed disappointment with today"s all-party meeting on Telangana.
"It is thoroughly hopeless meeting, useless meeting. Nothing has come out of this meeting. And he did not show any roadmap or any thing. It was a futile meeting. In fact, nothing has come out of this meeting. I am quite dissatisfied. We are not satisfied at all," KCR told mediapersons after the meeting.
"They said like this not less than thousand times. Who are going to believe them? Having called the all-party meeting, he would have said within a week. He should have said that he would talk to the Prime Minister after today"s meeting. Do we really require one month"s time? This is all drama. They have been playing the drama and they are continuing it," he added.
KCR, who has emerged as strong force in the politics of Andhra Pradesh in the recent times, further said that his party cadres would now meet to decide on the future course of action.
"I am not at all satisfied. They lied upon so many times. We don"t believe them. Now, I have announced a Telangana bandh tomorrow," he said.
Members of the regional parties from Andhra Pradesh, who attended today"s meeting, also described it to be "inconclusive".
Union Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde, who presided over today"s all-party meeting on Telangana, said the Centre would take a decision on the statehood issue within a month.
"The meeting was very cordial. Some representatives said the decision should be given as early as possible, and some said that it should be taken within a month," he said.
Shinde said he has full faith that there will be a solution to the problems being faced by people of Andhra Pradesh.
The four-decade-old demand for Telangana, which is to be carved out of the economically less developed part of Andhra Pradesh, gathered momentum after the Congress-led UPA Government accepted the demand in principle.
So far, 33 Congress, Telugu Desam Party (TDP), Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS), Praja Rajyam Party and Independent lawmakers hailing from the Telangana region have resigned from parliament and the Andhra State Assembly.
The Telangana region comprises 10 Andhra Pradesh districts: Hyderabad, Adilabad, Khammam, Karimnagar, Mahbubnagar, Medak, Nalgonda, Nizamabad, Rangareddy, and Warangal. The Musi River, Krishna and Godavari rivers flow through the region from west to east.
Since Telangana was merged with Andhra state to form Andhra Pradesh state in 1956, there were several agitations in Telangana to invalidate the merger and to form Telangana state. On December 9, 2009, Government of India announced process of formation of Telangana state.
Due to objections raised in Coastal Andhra and Rayalaseema regions immediately after the announcement, and due to the agitation in those regions for 14 days, the decision to form the new state was put on hold on December 23, 2009.
There have several movements to invalidate the merger of Telangana and Andhra, major ones occurring in 1969, 1972 and 2000s onwards. Since December 2009, Telangana movement intensified and it continued to dominate the state politics and is the cause of instability in the region. (ANI)