Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Splitting Because of a Rookie?

Vasu Reddy From Chicago

The state continues to be in turmoil and in agitation, and several weeks after the announcement of splitting Andhra Pradesh the tempers continue to be high. The children going to school and the workers going to work and the vendors and buyers and travelers and tourists; everyone is agitating or agitated. There is continued destruction and strife amidst the uncertainty of what will happen next with the division and what will be the consequences of separation?

The discussion on the main reason for separation being the influence of Jagan leading into the next election is discussed as the foremost in all the decisions made by the ruling party. Over decades of separation sentiment no party in power at the center declared their intention to separate the state, and Andhra Pradesh remains untied despite the sometimes real and sometimes mild discussions for separation of the regions. Politically it did not suit anyone in the center to support the division of Telugu speaking people.

The state delivered the parliamentary seats to the current ruling party in the last two election cycles along with the state government, and there was no reason to contemplate the separation of the state with things in favor of the party in power. The current state of affairs are very unfavorable both in the center and in the state, and status quo will probably be a zero benefit to Congress. Something has to be done to win the parliamentary seats and also possibly retain power in the state. The announcement to separate the state was going to bring support from the region agitation for separation, and also position the party in positive light in the region against the split, but the outcome of the announcement has been exactly the opposite. The appeacement of the separation movement did not workout as anticipated and the merger of the lone party that has been driving the separation has not been forthcoming, rather it has become a more contentious. The ruling party's decision has not been welcome in any region of the state as there are so much ambiguity in the process, no one is sure of what will be the reality when the state is divided.

Few people in leadership have come out and said that the decision of the ruling party has been made to counter Jagan's growing influence, and the near certainty of his part's victory in the upcoming elections; both at the state and central elections. This week there is one leader who has come out and said, that the congress had only one reason to declare the separate statehood; Jagan and his party. There is no doubt in this assertion and politically it may have back fired on the Congress losing out across the state. The the Telangana region the region if the regional party doesn’t merge with Congress, the ruling party will score Zero, and in the rest of Andhra Congress will score a Zero whatever its decision on the state.

The opposition parties have no loss or gain from the separation, except Jagan might have had the hold on the united Andhra Pradesh, instead of a separated state. The assumption that the congress will come into power in both regions by a simple virtue of its decision is at best the worst political blunder in the Indian democracy. The state has lost all its normal functioning and destruction everywhere, and no one is happy with the consequences of the decision. Work stoppages and property destruction continue and there is no stopping from rhetoric against everyone and everything. The state is unhappy with one decision or the other and the gloom of doom is all over the place, simply because of the way the decision was made and announced.

If the state was being divided for one single reason; avoid putting Jagan in power then the results have not yielded what was expected. The assumption of the separation movement will disappear and it will get merged into congress also seem to be farfetched. The entire state is unhappy with the regular announcements that come from the center and the posturing of the state leadership. It did not produce the desired results rather has created uncertainty and mistrust amongst the people.

Congress has run out of steam and ideas for leadership in the state, and perhaps need to be wise in the future steps leading to separation. The decisions made for Andhra have started demands in the other parts of the nation for separation, and a lot of fodder for the opposition parties. Its a no win situation, and if the announcement had any bearing on an individual politician who is new to politics, the ruling party has missed the boat by miles.

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