Disappointed Telangana will make Option 5 new mantra

Hyderabad: For those who have been fighting tooth and nail for a new state of Telangana, today changed nothing. In Delhi, the Home Minister presented a report that outlines different options suggested by the Srikrishna Committee on the way forward for Andhra. In Hyderabad, pro-Telangana parties reiterated that they will not settle for anything less than their own state, with Hyderabad as the capital.

At a rally attended by thousands in Hyderabad, K Chandrasekhar Rao, the man whose hunger fast in 2009 revitalized the campaign for a Telangana state, said, "I honestly appeal to  the Prime Minister of India: don't dither or dilly-dally on the issue. Please come forward, keep your promise."  The crowd roared. 

KCR, as he's known, wants the government to introduce a bill for the formation of a separate Telangana in the budget session of Parliament.

The government has to figure out whether and how to divide the state's three regions - Rayalaseema, Coastal Andhra and Telangana. 

In its report, the Srikrishna Committee, set up in February 2010 to study what "all sections of society" want for Andhra Pradesh, says the most "workable option" is a united Andhra Pradesh with constitutionally-allocated regional rights to help the socio-economic development of the Telangana region.

In parts like Karimnagar, that's not really a proposition that inspires confidence. `` The Telangana people won't trust this. They did nothing for us in the last 60 years. Even if you sanction crores of budget to this region, nothing will happen while we are ruled by Andhra leaders,'' says Rajalingam Naik, a farmer. 

Telangana leaders say the one feature they like in the Srikrishna Committee's report is Option 5 which considers the formation of a separate Telangana state with Hyderabad as its capital.

There is talk among political parties and other groups about using Option 5 to up the ante. A non-cooperation movement by government employees in the Telangana region is being discussed. Parties also say they will exert pressure on Congress MPs and MLAs from Telangana to quit- a way of pressuring the Congress at the centre.