The Telangana issue came back to haunt the Centre on Monday as Congress MPs and lawyers from the region protested inside and outside Parliament to press for their demand for a separate state.
That the issue has once again moved to Delhi with the commencement of the Budget Session became evident as pro-Telangana Congress MPs, in black shirts and waistcoats, waved placards of Jai Telangana and Jai Congress during President Pratibha Patil’s joint address to both Houses.
They later met Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Law Minister Veerappa Moily, who is Congress party in-charge of Andhra Pradesh affairs, to apprise them of the “volatile situation” in the state after a teenager set himself ablaze in Hyderabad on Saturday.
The 11 MPs also showed the teenager’s picture to the Prime Minister who, according to Nizamabad MP Madhu Goud Yaskhi, was “quite moved” and “sad” on seeing it.
“We informed him of the police high-handedness and atrocities on students. The Prime Minister was concerned that students are dying in the agitation,” Yaskhi told HT. “The Prime Minister told us that we are trying to find a solution and are working on it.”
The reason for fresh round of violence in Andhra, according to Yaskhi, was the absence of the word Telangana in the terms of reference of the Centre’s expert committee headed by retired Supreme Court judge B.N. Srikrishna. There was no mention of it in the President’s address also.