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Rayalaseema state must, if Telangana formed: parties
With the separate Telangana state issue taking shape, Various bodies have sprung up to protect the region’s interests
FROM R AKHILESHWARI
If the Telangana state is formed, the Rayalaseema region would also demand a separate state which would include the Bellary district of Karnataka, various political parties asserted on Saturday.
Political parties and academics in all the four districts of Kurnool, Kadapa, Anantapur and Chittoor comprising the region have begun independent exercises to deliberate on the future of the region in the event of the Telangana state coming into being.
Various bodies have sprung up in each district to fight to protect the region’s interests. Former TDP MLA from Kurnool and an industrialist, T.G. Venkatesh has launched a forum for the rights of Rayalaseema. While Congress MP, Kotla Suryaprakash Reddy has called for a meeting of all parties next week to draft an action plan for launching a separate Rayalaseema movement, Venkatesh is planning to hold an all-Rayalaseema public meeting in Kurnool on August 15. In Tirupati a ‘Rayalaseema Parirakshana Samiti’ is being launched on Sunday.
Prof Bhuman of Sri Venkateswara University explained the logic of a separate state. “With the separate Telangana state issue slowly taking shape, people of Andhra region have already started projecting Vijayawada and Guntur as the possible capital for the Andhra State. This is not acceptable to us. We demand that when Telangana is separated, Tirupati should be the capital of Andhra State.”
If this is not acceptable, then a separate Rayalaseema should be conceded, he said. All the supporters of Rayalaseema state maintain that they favour separation only if Telangana state is formed.
Suryaprakash Reddy said the issue would be raised as part of Congress Forum to be set up to mobilise support for a separate Rayalaseema. Reddy who is the son of former CM, K.Vijayabhaskar Reddy and is a power to reckon with in Kurnool district, cited support of “public opinion” for his plan to include Nellore and Prakasam districts of coastal Andhra and Bellary district of Karnataka in Rayalaseema state. The inter-state dispute over the Tungabhadra waters with Karnataka could be settled if Bellary was merged with Rayalaseema, he said.
Meanwhile, the state government has said it would consider setting up of regional development boards for the three regions of Telangana, Andhra and Rayalaseema areas to ensure uniform development in each of the regions.