THE 29TH STATE: A BRIEF ACCOUNT OF THE TELANGANA STATEHOOD ISSUE Telangana, India’s 29th state is to be carved out from the state of Andhra Pradesh in India. The city of Hyderabad would serve as the common capital of Telangana and Andhra Pradesh for ten years. On 30 July 2013 the ruling Congress party bowed down to the decades-old political pressure and announced its intention to shape Telangana out of Andhra Pradesh. The timeline for the creation of the new state involves an intricate process, which has been allotted 122 days; approximately four months. The split must to be approved by the Indian Parliament before the state is officially formed. With a population of over 3.5 crore, the new state comprising mostly the Telugu speaking areas of the princely Nizam state will have 17 Lok Sabha seats and 119 assembly seats. After creation, Telangana will consist of 10 districts: Hyderabad, Adilabad, Khammam, Karimnagar, Mahbubnagar, Medak, Nalgonda, Nizamabad, Rangareddy, and Warangal; primarily Hyderabad and its surrounding districts. Since the Hyderabad state was amalgamated with Andhra to form Andhra Pradesh in 1956, there have been several agitations in Telangana aimed at quashing the merger and nullifying the decision of unification. On 9 December 2009, the Government of India announced the process of forming the separate state of Telangana. However, this process was halted just two weeks later, after aggressive protests shook Coastal Andhra and Rayalaseema regions in reaction to this pronouncement. The demand for separate statehood:
Telangana is the largest of the three regions of Andhra Pradesh state, covering 41.47% of its total area. It is populated by 40.54% of the state's population and contributes about 76% of the state's revenues, excluding the contribution of the central government. When the central government's contribution to revenue is included, Andhra Pradesh's revenue sources come from Telangana- 61.47% (including 37.17% from Hyderabad), from the central government- 19.86%; from Andhra-14.71%; and from Rayalaseema-3.90%. Proponents of a separate Telangana state refer to perceived injustices in the distribution of water, budget allocations, and jobs. Within the state of Andhra Pradesh, 68.5% of the catchment area of the Krishna River and 69% of the catchment area of the Godavari River are in the plateau region of Telangana and flowing through the other parts of the state into bay of Bengal. Telangana and non coastal parts of Karnataka and Maharastra states form Deccan Plateau. Telangana supporters state that the benefits of irrigation through the canal system under major irrigation projects is accruing substantially, 74.25%, to the Coastal Andhra region, while the share to Telangana is 18.20%. The remaining 7.55% goes to the Rayalseema region. The share of education funding for Telangana ranges from 9.86% in government-aided primary schools to 37.85% in government degree colleges. The above numbers include the expenditure in Hyderabad. Budget allocations to Telangana are generally less than 1/3 of the total Andhra Pradesh budget. There are allegations that in most years, funds allocated to Telangana were never spent. According to Professor Jayashankar, the celebrated academic and Telangana activist and ideologue, only 20% of the total Government employees, less than 10% of employees in the secretariat, and less than 5% of department heads in the Andhra Pradesh government are from Telangana; those from other regions make up the bulk of employment. He also alleged that Telangana chief ministers represented the state for only 6 1/2 years out of over five decades of its existence, with no chief minister from the region being in power continuously for more than 2 1/2 years. As per Srikrishna Committee on Telangana, leaders from the Telangana areas held the position of CM for 10.5 years while those from Seema-Andhra region held it for 42 years. Proponents of a separate Telangana state feel that the agreements,...
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