Congress and the Telangana Rashtra Samiti on Wednesday gave divergent versions on the issue of merger even after their leaders have held a series of meetings since Parliament gave its nod for creation of Telangana last week.
Congress claimed that TRS chief K Chandrashekhar Rao has expressed readiness to merge but the regional party of Andhra Pradesh said no such assurance has been given.
"As far as merger of TRS with Congress is concerned, we are very happy that KCR has met Congress President (Sonia Gandhi) and party Vice President Rahul Gandhi and he has indicated merger of TRS with Congress party," AICC in-charge of Andhra Pradesh Digvijay Singh told reporters in New Delhi.
“The details will be worked out," he added.
However, a top leader of TRS had a different take on it.
"Our leadership has never indicated that TRS will merge with Congress. We had met the Prime Minister (Manmohan Singh), Congress President and Vice President to thank them for their efforts for passage of Telangana Bill," said the TRS leader on condition of anonymity.
Nothing beyond that transpired in the meetings, he added.
"A merger is unlikely between the two parties since 90 per cent of TRS leaders are against it," the TRS leader said.
He added that instead of merger, an alliance between TRS and Congress is a possibility, which may take shape only after the Election Code of Conduct comes into force.
According to him, a majority among the top leadership were against the merger, though they were in favour of an alliance for the forthcoming elections.
The TRS leader said Chandrasekhar Rao is unhappy over the delay in announcing the appointment date for the new state.
Image: TRS president K Chandrashekhar Rao