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Friday, August 05, 2011

TELANGANA ROW


Development is key to any problem. When people are deprived of basic facilities like roads, drinking water, sanitation, education, irrigation and communication , naturally the seed of discontentment sprouts which may cascade into mass movement. The Naxal problem and Telangana row are latest examples of problems on socio-economic front brewing the country. Unless, we take the problem head on, it will become intractable.

Before, I actually dwell on the Telangana tangle, let me make it clear that neither I am pro nor against for a separate Telangana State. I am simply concerned to the socio-economic development of the region with political empowerment so that the people are not felt isolated in their own land.

Considering the magnitude of problem, Govt. of India set up a committee headed by retired Justice Srikrishna to submit a report after consultations with all stakeholders. The Committee submitted
its extensive report in December, 2010,  but political parties in Andhra Pradesh are at logjam guarding their own narrow political interests sliding consensus a distant possibility, even after six months.

As suggested by Srikrishna Committee report, the best possible solution is creation of a Telangana Regional Council with enough teeth to ensure equi-development. I am fully agreed with such set up with special emphasis regarding allocation of funds district wise rather than sector-wise so that the most backward district will get a glaring attention. For 10 to 15 years, the Council should be provided with special funds under the aegis of Planning Commission to increase the literacy, infuse growth on all parameters like roads, sanitation, irrigation, employment etc so that regional disparities are completely wiped out.

I strongly feel that development can be ensured by close monitoring of implementation mechanism at gross-roots to achieve the stated objective. Till such time a consensus is reached among the political parties, an administrative decision to create a separate Department of Telangana Affairs could save the situation  with a Minister from that region  to make incharge of that Department. The issue may die down once the development overtakes the politics.

We are a Great Democracy. When we were able to tackle the Kashmir problem with development as buzzword, why not Telangana ? Once we take steps at nano level with  District as a coherent unit and allocate funds and special funds based on the district’s development index, I think nobody will rise a dissenting voice.

After all economics will certainly overtake politics.

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