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YSR’s son double speaks on Telangana
Published on 15 Dec. 2009 11:56 PM IST
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There was high drama in parliament Tuesday after Congress MP Y.S. Jaganmohan Reddy made common cause with his bitter rivals, the Telugu Desam Party (TDP), to press for a united Andhra Pradesh, even as he said he stood for a “Golden Telangana” - without specifying what he meant by this. The division in the Congress ranks was more than evident as party MPs clashed in the Lok Sabha over the Telangana issue, forcing the adjournment of the house for 10 minutes. Telangana figured in the Rajya Sabha too, with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) accusing the government of “playing with the sensitivities of people” on the issue and reiterating its demand for a roadmap on the creation of the separate state. On his part, Jaganmohan, son of the late Andhra Pradesh chief minister Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy, shook hands with the TDP MPs, took a placard from them and waved it near Lok Sabha Speaker Meira Kumar’s podium to establish the point that “we want a united Andhra Pradesh”. Outside parliament, however, he told reporters that he stood for a “Golden Telangana”. Pressed to explain what exactly he meant by this, Jaganmohan Reddy resorted to semantics. “What I want is to work towards a ‘Golden Telangana’. I want everybody (in Andhra Pradesh) to be together as brothers and sisters. They are all my brothers and sisters. I do not want to lose any of my Telangana brothers and sisters,” he said, adding that he wanted all the people of Andhra Pradesh to live as “one family”. The Kadappa MP said he did so as he felt that if he did not join hands with TDP MPs, they alone would become “champions” of the united Andhra Pradesh movement that strengthened in the state after last week’s announcement of Home Minister P. Chidambaram that a separate Telangana state would be formed. The Telangana issue surfaced in the Lok Sabha as zero hour began, with TDP MPs storming the speaker’s podium to vociferously protest creation of a separate state. They were soon joined by several Congress MPs from Andhra Pradesh, including Jaganmohan Reddy, who was seen waving a placard reading “We want united AP”. When some Congress MPs from Andhra region, led by K.S. Rao, tried to raise their voices and rushed towards the podium, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Pawan Kumar Bansal tried to pacify them and asked them to return to their seats. Some MPs from Telangana led by M. Jagannath also raised their voices, leading to an angry verbal exchange between Congress MPs who found themselves on opposing sides of the Telangana issue. The ruckus forced the speaker to adjourn the house at 12.20 p.m. for 10 minutes. Jaganmohan also downplayed the complaint against him by Congress MPs from Telangana, and said all of them are brothers and “tomorrow we will patch up.” Earlier in the day, Congress MPs from Telangana region sought action against Jaganmohan for colluding in the Lok Sabha with TDP MPs who opposed a separate state. Raising the Telangana issue during zero hour in the Rajya Sabha, BJP member M. Venkaiah Naidu said: “What is happening in Andhra Pradesh is a matter of anguish. The government of India has complicated the issue. The state is in turmoil, students are on strike. More than 130 MLAs seem to have resigned. The assembly was not able to function and was adjourned sine die.” “The government is playing with the sensitivities of the people. The government of India has behaved in a most irresponsible and immature manner. This is not the way to deal with the situation. I want the government to come out with a roadmap (on the Telangana issue),” he added. Naidu, who belongs to Andhra Pradesh but represents Karnataka in the Rajya Sabha, made a similar demand last week.

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