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Telangana Jagarana Sena's militant arm draws flak
Syed Amin Jafri in Hyderabad | September 11, 2005 17:45 IST
The launch of Telangana Jagarana Sena as a 'militant' arm of Telangana Rashtra Samithi, which is spearheading the movement for separate Telangana state, has drawn flak from all other political parties in Andhra Pradesh.
Coming down heavily on TRS president and Union Labour Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao for floating a Sena patterned after Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh, they questioned his democratic credentials and warned him against aggressive posturing on the separate Telangana demand.
Andhra Pradesh Congress president, K Keshav Rao, said TJS marked the 'saffronisation of the TRS', since the new outfit was headed by a veteran RSS leader. He observed that Telangana state would not materialise through crude talk, aggressive posturing or militancy. He questioned the TRS founder for floating an outfit similar to the RSS and led by an RSS leader in the name of a democratic movement.
The two Left parties took serious exception to the creation of TJS for 'carrying out the agenda of the Sangh parivar'. Communist Party of India state secretary K Narayana criticised the TRS for adopting undemocratic and non-political means for achieving the separate state. Communist Party if India-Marxist state secretary B V Raghuvulu lashed out at Chandrasekhar Rao for allowing his party to become an organ of the RSS in the state.
Incidentally, the Bharatiya Janata Party, too, has reacted sharply. BJP national secretary and former union minister Bandaru Dattatreya said there was no need for political parties to float such senas to carry forward their cause.
The TRS formally launched TJS on September 10 to counter anti-Telangana forces, by organizing a full-fledged training camp for lathi-wielding cadres. 'Chief Commander' K Umakant, a former RSS vibhag pramukh at Hyerabad, heads the Sena.
The first batch of 600 'preraks' (motivators) of TJS was given basic induction training at a drill. They would be imparted training in martial arts.
The volunteers, donning white shirts and trousers and pink scarves (khanduvas), carried full-length lathis on their shoulders. Chandrasekhar Rao and Union Minister of State for Rural Development A Narendra, who is a former BJP leader with active RSS links, led the inaugural parade at the three-day camp.
The 600 preraks would impart training to 3,630 sainiks. They, in turn, would recruit over one lakh volunteers in the villages and municipal wards in the entire Telangana region. A 'sainik maha sammelan' with more than a lakh TJS sainiks would be held in Hyderabad on October 28.
Chandrasekhar Rao and Narendra warned that the TJS would hit back at anti-Telangana forces. The aim of TJS was to sustain the tempo of the movement for separate Telangana state, they said. TJS cadres would function in a democratic and restrained manner but would react with force if anti-Telangana forces tested their patience.
The TRS leaders maintained that TJS would have nothing to do with the RSS or the Maoists but would consist of hardcore Telangana activists. However, suspicions persist that elements from both the ultra-right and ultra-left movements might infiltrate the TJS.
While Chandrasekhar Rao is buying peace with Maoists by demanding the withdrawal of ban on them and resumption of peace talks, Narendra tilts towards the RSS and proudly proclaims his links with the saffron outfit despite being a minister in the Congress-led UPA government.