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HindustanTimes Sat,20 Sep 2014

Time for decision on Telangana has come: Digvijaya

IANS  New Delhi/Hyderabad, July 26, 2013
First Published: 19:47 IST(26/7/2013) | Last Updated: 19:56 IST(26/7/2013)

The process of consultation over the Telangana issue is over and the time has come for a decision, Congress general secretary Digvijaya Singh said on Friday.

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"We shall let you know the decision taken," he said in New Delhi amid hectic activity of the party leadership to take a final decision on the issue of separate statehood to Telangana.

Digvijaya Singh, in-charge of party affairs in Andhra Pradesh, was talking to reporters after holding separate meetings with chief minister N Kiran Kumar Reddy, deputy chief minister Damodar Rajanarasimha and state Congress chief Botsa Satyanarayana.

Digvijaya Singh's predecessor Ghulam Nabi Azad was also present at the meetings that assumed significance ahead of the Congress core group meeting on Friday evening.

The two central leaders held detailed discussions with the three state leaders who rushed to the national capital on summons from the party central leadership.

The core group meeting is likely to finalise the date for the meeting of Congress Working Committee (CWC), expected to take a final decision.

The three state leaders, earlier this month, submitted their reports to the Congress core group. The leadership is believed to have summoned them again to get certain issues clarified.

Kiran Kumar Reddy and Botsa Satyanarayana, in their separate reports, are understood to have opposed any move to divide the state while Damodar Rajanarasimha, who is from Telangana, backed the statehood demand.

Earlier in the day, Congress leaders from Seemandhra (Rayalaseema and Andhra regions) called on the chief minister and urged him to convey to the leadership their strong opposition to the state's division, party sources said.

Seemandhra leaders, who made a beeline to the national capital in a last-ditch attempt to stall a possible decision to carve out Telangana state, held a meeting to chalk out their strategy. The meeting was attended by state and central ministers and Congress MPs from Seemandhra.

S Sailajanth, the state minister heading the group opposed to state's division, told reporters after the meeting that they were confident the state would remain united. He termed as speculations the talk of a likely decision to carve out Telangana state.

"We have decided to exhaust all options to ensure the state remains united," he said.

Hectic activity in Delhi has began amid the continuing resignations of Seemandhra leaders to mount pressure on the central government.

Two Congress legislators on Friday submitted their resignations to the assembly speaker. As many as 16 legislators of the YSR Congress party and one of Congress on Thursday announced their resignations.


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