Jagan asks GoM to keep the state united

Following is the full text of the YSRCP chief Sri Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy's letter submitted to the GoM by party leaders Mysura Reddy and Gattu Ramachandra Rao in Delhi during their discussions on Nov 13, 2013.


The Group of
Ministers (GoM),

New Delhi.


This is the response of our Party to the invitation
to meet GoM as sought by you.

You have asked us to respond on various issues
relating to the bifurcation of the State. It may be recalled that we have
conveyed our Party stand to the Joint Secretary of Union Home Ministry on
November 3, 2013 on the points raised by you.

There is no change in our stand and its remains the
same, then and now. We will oppose every step you take towards bifurcation of
the State. Our Party reiterates with clarity and conviction that the State
should be united and it should not be divided under any circumstances in the
best interest of the state and there need not be any ambiguity in this

We cannot endorse the decision taken by the union
cabinet on October 3, 2013 to split the State as it is not acceptable to us.
Over 75% of the State population is opposing the division tooth and nail and is
protesting for the past three-and-a-half months in an unprecedented way as we
the people of the state firmly believe that the division would adversely affect
the future generations for hundreds of years to come.

Yet, neither the Centre nor the ruling Congress
Party is in a position to heed and honour the feelings of the people or to the
parties that have been voicing the concern of the people.

The motive behind the setting up of the GoM,
certainly, is not to address the democratic protests of the region and to
review the Centre’s decision. It is obvious that the Centre wants to go ahead
with the division even if it causes immense damage to both the regions.

We are at a loss for words to describe the attitude
of the Government as to why it fails to acknowledge the fact that 75% of the
population is opposing the division.

The infamous Partition of Bengal in 1905 by Lord
Curzon (the then Viceroy of India) is coming to the memory of Telugu people
afresh along with the British ideology of Divide and Rule as it is the same
principle that AICC is adopting now.

What is constitutional premise on which the Centre
has arrived at a decision to divide the State? Though the UPA boasts of tall
claims that it has brought in the Right to Information (RTI) Act in 2005, it
has failed to take a single step in a democratic and transparent way when it
came to the division of the State.

In this context, some questions need to be answered
to the people of Andhra Pradesh and the people of the country as well.

1. Can the Centre use the powers vested on it
arbitrarily take undue advantage to garner a few votes and seats?

2. The Central Government has taken a unilateral decision
to divide the State on December 9, 2009 and decision was dubbed by Congress as
a birthday gift by Party President Sonia Gandhi. Can such yardstick be applied
for dividing the State?

3. Though the Centre has the power to divide the
State, can it take decisions without any concrete basis and rationality? The
Centre does not recognize the fact that Andhra Pradesh state was formed on
recommendations of the State Reorganization commission (SRC) which regrouped
the states on linguistic basis in 1955. After 66 years of independence and 63
years of constitution in force, and 57 years of unification of Andhra Pradesh,
can the Centre create a wedge between regions and decide to divide the state
with political motives for gaining votes and seats? Is it justified?

4. There are numerous demands for separate states
elsewhere in the country. In some cases, the concerned assemblies have adopted
and favoured a resolution for the division and sent it to the Centre, which in
turn have been ignored thus far. But it is moving at a break-neck speed to
split Andhra Pradesh just six months ahead of the general elections. Why?

5. If the Centre endorses the division of Andhra
Pradesh today, such arbitrary procedure in the days to come will it not set a
precedent for any Government at the Centre in future to arbitrarily divide any
State with a simple majority in the Parliament?

6. How did the Centre take decision on bifurcating
the State on October 3, 2013 without the consent of the State Assembly?
Earlier, Srikrishna Committee in its report suggested that the State stands to
lose if it is divided and in the first preference it has mentioned to keep the
State united. In that case what is the basis of the Cabinet note on division?
Is it justified?

7. Public opinion and the State Assembly are the
genuine basis for any decision. In that case without taking the Assembly into
confidence, why were things taken so far, by setting up of GoM which in turn is
seeking reports from concerned department secretaries and parties?  

8. Till now 28 States are formed in the country.
Why is the Government side-stepping the established best practices in formation
of a state when it comes to Andhra Pradesh? You do not want to take Assembly
into confidence and do not want a resolution to be adopted. Why?


To brush up your memory, in 1956, assemblies of the
two states of Andhra and Hyderabad have separately adopted a resolution with a
two-third majority for the formation of Andhra Pradesh State. Hyderabad
assembly had adopted a resolution with a two-third majority for the formation
of Vishalandhra (Andhra Pradesh) on linguistic basis. In the 174-member
Hyderabad State Assembly, 147 participated in the voting and 103 members have
agreed for Vishalandhra (Andhra Pradesh).

Respecting the feelings of Telangana people who
wanted Vishalandhra, the then Chief Minister of Hyderabad State, Burgula
Ramakrishna Rao (a son of Telangana) scarified his post as Chief Minister and
helped the resolution getting the sanctity of the House. Similarly, the Andhra
Assembly also unanimously adopted a resolution for Vishalandhra.

On what basis, is this split of Andhra Pradesh,
which was formed after adopting resolutions with more than two-third majority
of two State assemblies, is now being contemplated? The speech of former Prime
Minister Indira Gandhi on the floor of the Parliament in 1972 (which is
categorical on the unity of the State) is also not been considered. In her own
words, Mrs. Gandhi has said

“Perhaps, it was this long history which inspired the Telugu speaking
people when they yearned and struggled for several decades to form a unified
Andhra Pradesh. May I cite a bit of my personal experience? I happened to be
touring parts of the south just before the report of the sates reorganization
commission was made public and my ears are still reverberating with the
full-throated cries of Vishalandhra. It was really the will of Telugu-speaking
people which prevailed over the proposal of some people to retain the old
Hyderabad state”.

Even the primary recommendation of the Srikrishna
Committee Report has been ignored by the UPA Government. What sort of approach
is this?

Water and

River water sharing disputes have taken ugly turns
in the States. The Cauvery dispute between Tamil Nadu and Karnataka continues
despite tribunals, court rulings and setting up of Water Boards. When
Maharashtra government started illegally building projects such as Babli
project, the protests of Andhra Pradesh were like a cry in the wilderness.
Despite the Tribunals and court verdicts, the river water sharing dispute
between Tamil Nadu and Karnataka is in the open. Andhra Pradesh, the lower
riparian state, while still united, water flow is being visibly curtailed by
upper states of Maharashtra and Karnataka. Only after their requirements are
met and their dams are filled up, Andhra Pradesh gets the water. There have
been protests by Telugu people on the issue for the past so many years.

While this remains the situation even when the
state is united and now if the State is divided, where will Srisailam and
Nagarjunasagar get water from? If you divide the region which cuts the course
of Krishna River, will there not be frequent skirmishes along the banks? How
will you give water to Krishna Ayacut? What about Godavari Water? Where will we
get water for Polavaram Project? What about the projects that are either built
or to be built on the surplus waters? From Kuppam to Srikakulam where is the
source for fresh water except sea water?

As a result of these ineffective tribunals and
boards our State continues to bear the brunt during drought and floods as well.
If the situation is so critical when the State is united, despite Tribunals and
Boards, what will happen if the State is divided and how will another Water Council
and another Water Board help? For sure the issue will be complicated further
and situation will deteriorate but will not benefit us and the state stands to
lose if divided. In fact, Bachawat Tribunal has awarded full rights to Andhra
Pradesh on the Krishna surplus waters. Brijesh Kumar Tribunal which came next
has decreased the State’s share and ignored AP’s right on surplus waters and
continues to entertain Maharashtra and Karnataka’s claims. With the news that
Andhra Pradesh is heading for split, both Maharashtra and Karnataka are staking
claim for more surplus and allotted waters. If this is the scenario now, the
situation will worsen and Telugu people will be badly affected after the State
is divided. 

Why do we need these Councils? Why is it that you
have no such similar Councils formed to draw water from Maharashtra and
Karnataka? Is it not evident that the existing tribunals and boards have been
ineffective so far? And what good would another tribunal or another board or
another council do? The two upper states can build projects at their will and
use water at their wish and when it comes to Andhra Pradesh a Council and a
Board will be set up to ensure that no project is built in Telangana and
Seemandhra. Telugu farmers are expected to be silent spectators though they are
deprived of their rightful share of waters.

Moreover, it was reported that the Centre, after
dividing the State, will form a Water Council under the aegis of Water
Resources Ministry and a Water Board will be set up under this Council.
Especially as this has never been done before to any state in this country. Is
such a division proposal justified?

Free power to farmers is being given only in Andhra
Pradesh and this was the boon bestowed on farmers by Late Dr. YS Rajasekhara
Reddy. The State now has 31 lakh agriculture power connections, of which about
20 lakh are in Telangana region. Free power is now being given for two to three
hours per day only by the present administration. While this the situation in
united Andhra Pradesh you can imagine a situation if the State is divided,
farmers might not even get half hour power supply.

The division will have a telling adverse effect on
farmers, agriculture and rural economy of both the regions and this is not
being considered by the Centre.


During the past 60 years, Hyderabad was developed
as a nucleus for all the 23 districts. If the State is divided, where will our
youth go for jobs?

Andhra Pradesh has a coastline of 972 km, Hyderabad
is the industrial and IT hub of the State. The metro, seacoast, airports and
seaports are all cogs in the wheel of development. If the cogs are separated,
development in both regions will be hampered. The existing industries will be
hit hard forcing them to move to new destinations, there would be lay-offs, new
industries will not come and jobs will not be generated.

From the budget point of view, Andhra Pradesh is
third biggest economy. After Hindi, Telugu is the second largest spoken
language in the country.  If attempts are
made to divide such a big and strong State it should be treated as a conspiracy
to weaken the strong Telugu nation.

As on today, Hyderabad city alone contributes more
than 50% of revenue to state’s budget, proving that, it is the result of
collective effort of all Telugu people in developing the city during the last
six decades. As more than 50% of the State revenue comes from Hyderabad, it
will be difficult to pay the salaries in the State after the bifurcation.  Development and welfare schemes will take a
back seat. It is not justified to split the State for the sake of votes and
seats as the future of the coming generations is at stake. It is also very
important to keep in mind that people from across the state who are employed
here in Hyderabad have invested their small savings and hard earned money to
buy small places of residence, have invested in small businesses. And now in
this context just imagine if the state is to be bifurcated these investments
would crash. Would Mrs. Sonia Gandhi and the Congress Party compensate for the
loss of value for their investments?

Some quixotic proposals from Congress party like
merging two Rayalaseema districts with Telangana are also making the rounds.
Such nefarious thoughts arise out of the desperate arithmetic need to split the
state. Why only two districts? Instead it would be better if the State is
renamed as Telangana and kept united by adding the remaining districts. The
desperate arithmetic vouches for the fact that Congress is dividing the State
for political reasons and for the sake of votes and seats.

Today the ruling Congress Party is trying to split
Andhra Pradesh. If other states, people and political parties do not react
thinking it does not concern them, it may be their turn tomorrow. Will J
Jayalalithaa, P Chidambaram agree if they say that Tamil Nadu will be split for
the sake of votes and seats? If West Bengal comes for a split, will Mamata
Banerjee Communists accept? Will Navin Patnaik give his assent to bifurcate
Odisha? Will the locals agree if Karnataka is split? Will Narender Modi agree
for the bifurcation of Gujarat? Even if Prime Minister Manmohan Singh agrees
for the division of Punjab, will the people of Punjab accept?

If this country remains a mute spectator to the
injustice meted out to Andhra Pradesh by the ruling Party, won’t another party
in power at the Centre resort to same tactics in other states in future? Today
they want to split our state on regional basis. What is the guarantee that they
will not separate other states on the basis of religion, caste or other
considerations in the days to come?

The Government policy is like that of the Nazi
philosophy before the World War II. Here we place the most popular quote Martin
Niemöller, the German theologian.

First they came for the

and I didn't speak out
because I wasn't a communist.

Then they came for the

and I didn't speak out
because I wasn't a socialist.

Then they came for the
trade unionists,

and I didn't speak out
because I wasn't a trade unionist.

Then they came for the

and I didn't speak out
because I wasn't a Jew.

Then they came for the

and I didn't speak out
because I wasn't a Catholic.

Then they came for me,

and there was no one left
to speak for me.

If the intelligentsia,
democratic institutions and people who respect the constitution keep quiet and
do not react to the injustice being meted out by the Centre to Andhra Pradesh,
the devil of division will raise its ugly head in any state and every state in
the coming days. 

Two-third Majority is a must:

As these states have already been reconstituted on
recommendations of State Reorganization Commission on linguistic basis, there
is an absolute need to bring in a constitution amendment which makes a
two-third majority in the State Assembly and Parliament as well mandatory to
divide or to form a new State.

In the absence of such a provision, there will be
attempts to weaken strong states by splitting them for the sake of votes and
seats and politicizing and playing with demographic sentiments. This has to

Andhra Pradesh is being degenerated by the secret
pacts between ruling Congress and main opposition TDP and TRS for the past four

The agitations for the past three-and-a-half months
and the feelings of 75% of the State population make it clear that the division
will not benefit Telugu people and there is no need for any bifurcation.

The driving force for such a bifurcation by the
Centre and the Congress is to gain majority of the 17 MP seats in the Telangana

Here we would like to throw light on a thought
provoking argument. Though Mrs. Sonia Gandhi married Late Shri Rajiv Gandhi in
1968, she took Indian citizenship only in 1983. It is exactly 30 years since
she became an Indian citizen. Now after these 30 years of bonding how would she
and the Congress Party feel if a bill is introduced in the Parliament asking
people born abroad to leave the country? This is the question being asked by
crores of people who have been living together in Andhra Pradesh for 60 years.

We urge the Union Government to understand this
bonding what is being in existence for past 60 years and stop the division
process forthwith as it spells doom to a multitude of Telugu people for
generations to come.

Jai United Andhra Pradesh.

Jai Telugu Talli.                                                                                                

                                  Yours sincerely

                                 Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy                                                                 





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