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Telangana Cong legislators divided over resignations

January 25, 2010 20:16 IST

Telangana Congress group, comprising of 52 Members of Legislative Assembly and 11 Members of Parliament and other elected representatives,  appear to be a divided house on the eve of their visit to New Delhi on Tuesday to meet the party high command on the issue of formation of Telangana state.

While most of the legislators including ministers have come out against the idea of resignations to create a crisis to force the Central leadership, some of the MLAs were determined to make a sacrifice.

The issue of January 28 as the deadline fixed by the Telanana Joint Action Committee for resignations was discussed at length on Monday at a meeting of Telangana Congress group attended by MPS, MLAs, MLCs and other leaders.

Most of the participants appeared to be bowing to the pressure of Congress high command, which has asked them not to resign and create a crisis for the Congress government in the state, some of them were insisting on quitting.

Two legislators Bhiksham Goud and Basavaraj Saraiah, speaking before the meeting told mediapersons that there was no question of going back on resignations.

"We will not withdraw resignations and we want all other MLAs including the ministers, and MPs, to remain committed to resignations to achieve Telangana," Bhiksham Goud said.

R Damodar Reddy, spokesman of the group, told mediapersons after the meeting that all the leaders were united and ready to make any sacrifice for Telangana.

He said that the delegation of Congress MLAs and MPs will be led by Congress Working Committee member K Keshav Rao, and will urge the high command to make a favourable statement on Telangana issue before the deadline of January 28.

But at least two ministers have come out against the deadline of JAC to tender resignations. D K Aruna of Mehbubnagar and Sunita Lakshma Reddy of Medak district said it was not proper on the part of anybody to fix deadlines for the Central government.

Aruna questioned the right of JAC to direct the ministers to resign. Sunita Lakshma Reddy did not see any reason for resignation as she said she had confidence in high command that it will take a positive decision on Telangana. "If it does not take a favourable decision, then I will quit my post and join the Telangana movement," she said.

The visit by the Congress delegation is being seen as an attempt to ease the pressure from the other parties to quit before January 28.

The leaders of two main opposition parties Telugu Desam and Telangana Rashtra Samiti were busy building pressure on Congress leaders to quit.

M Narasimhlu of TDP questioned the rationale of Congress representatives visiting Delhi instead of resigning.

"There is no use of their visit to Delhi because they are not going to get even an appointment to meet Sonia Gandhi," he said.  Narasimhlu said that all the Telangana legislators in TDP were ready to resign.

T Harish Rao of TRS has already warned that those who fail to resign by the deadline will be branded as 'traitors of Telangana.'

Meanwhile, the office of Telangana Joint Action Committee was formally opened in Hyderabad on Monday morning. The office set up at the New MLAs Quarters was inaugurated by the JAC convenor Prof Kodanda Ram.

Speaking to mediapersons on the occasion, Ram said that he would meet all the Telangana legislators to persuade them to abide by the deadline of January 28 and quit their membership to build pressure on the Center.

Mohammed Siddique in Hyderabad