Asserting that the decision to create a separate state of Telangana is not an easy one, Congress General Secretary Digvijay Singh on Monday said whatever decision has to be taken would be taken in the best interest of the nation, in the best interest of the state and in the best interest of the welfare of the people of Andhra Pradesh.
"I have had the experience of the division of a state when Chhattisgarh was created out of Madhya Pradesh. It's not an easy decision and the issues of division are also quite intricate. Therefore, whatever decision has to be taken would be taken in the best interest of the nation, in the best interest of the state and in the best interest of the welfare of the people of Andhra Pradesh," said Singh.
"We have a political challenge ahead of us 2014, we owe it to the people of Andhra Pradesh who gave us a massive mandate in the parliament from Andhra Pradesh in 2004 and 2009 and we acknowledge that it was the large mandate that we got from Andhra Pradesh which made UPA-I possible," he added.
Singh said that Union Petroleum and Natural Gas Minister Dr. M. Veerappa Moily and Union Health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad, who were earlier the AICC in-charge of Andhra Pradesh, have had widest consultations at all levels of elected representatives and political parties on the Telangana issue.
"And now, a final decision is to be taken and I am requesting the Chief Minister and the PCC President and the Deputy Chief Minister to prepare a roadmap keeping both options open as to what should be the strategy, what should be the course of action following the decision," he added.
Congress MPs from Telangana have so far accused the Centre of following what they call a 'one-step-forward-two-backward' approach when it comes to addressing their demand for a separate state.
The Centre's flip-flop over the issue began in December 2009 when the then Home Minister P. Chidambaram promised the formation of a new state only to go back on it after a few days. The issue was later pushed before a committee headed by Justice B.N. Srikrishna.
This panel did not come up with a tangible solution, but instead presented six options. These included the creation of a Telangana Regional Council within Andhra, bifurcation of the state into Telangana with Hyderabad as the capital and Seemandhra with a new capital; bifurcation of the state into Seemandhra and Telangana after making Hyderabad a Union Territory; bifurcation of the state into Seemandhra and Telangana with enlarged Hyderabad metropolis as a Union Territory; bifurcation of the state into Rayala Telangana and Coastal Andhra; and maintenance of status quo. (ANI)