Andhra Pradesh's ruling Congress party on Saturday began efforts to dissuade its parliament and state legislature members from the Telangana region from resigning on Monday, but they ruled out going back on their decision unless the central government agrees to their demand for a separate Telangana state.
According to party sources, state Congress chief Botsa Satyanarayana met ministers and MPs from the region and urged them to reconsider their decision. He said their move would only create a crisis and not help in solving the issue.
Chief minister N Kiran Kumar Reddy also held separate talks with ministers, including K Jana Reddy, Sudershan Reddy and Basvaraj Saraiah, and urged them to act with restraint.
The MPs, state ministers and legislators from the Telangana region Friday decided to submit their resignations Monday. The legislators of main opposition Telugu Desam Party (TDP) from Telangana also announced they too would quit the same day.
Congress leader and Rajya Sabha member K Keshava Rao and Lok Sabha members G Vivek and Ponnam Prabhakar ruled out going back on their decision.
Stating that resignations alone will not help in achieving the goal of separate Telangana state, Keshava Rao told reporters that they will actively participate in the movement.
He also found fault with party leader Ghulam Nabi Azad's statement that consensus needed to be evolved over the issue.
"The entire parliament is for Telangana. All the major parties have already supported the demand," Keshava Rao said, adding that consensus was evolved through consultations over last one-and-half years.
He said that after considering all aspects, the central government on December 9, 2009, announced that the process for formation of separate Telangana state would be initiated. He also criticised the then chief minister K Rosaiah for not moving a resolution in the assembly in line with the central government's announcement.
Keshava Rao termed as "unwarranted" Azad's statement that the Telangana issue is linked to other states and other regional parties have to be consulted.
"I need not go to parties in Meghalaya to discuss Telangana issue," he remarked.
Addressing a meet-the-press programme organised by the Telangana Journalists' Forum, Keshava Rao said they decided to quit as a moral duty towards people and not to create a political or constitutional crisis.
The Congress has 12 MPs and 50 members of assembly from the Telangana region.