Taking stock of 2010 & Plans for 2011
I would like to wish you all a Very Happy New Year.
Year 2010 has been quite productive in terms of accomplishments. Along with the help of my fellow integrationist friends, we have:
• Submitted a solid report to the Srikrishna Committee arguing against the division of the state. The statistical evidence we presented to the committee was comprehensive and compelling. We are already seeing snippets of our arguments in the SKC report that is being leaked to the media.
• Presented our case in the electronic media on many telugu TV channels.
• Written editorials in leading telugu news papers in support of the integrationist message and countering the false propaganda of separatists.
• Released the Telugu version of my book My Telugu Roots in A.P., titled Mana Telugu Talli and extensively distributed the books to leaders and media organizations.
• Conducted state formation day celebrations in six cities across the United States. I hope these events acted as an inspiration for those living in our state.
• Lobbied leaders across the party lines to fight harder for the integrationist cause.
Though we’ve accomplished a great deal in 2010, I have to admit that our efforts lag behind the activities being conducted by the separatists. Integrationist message has not gone into the masses. Integrationist leaders in our state have failed to build a unity platform. If you are an integrationist living in Andhra Pradesh, there is no credible organization that you can associate with. In the Nizam region, separatists are continuing to push their message of hate and are succeeding in poisoning people’s minds.
I hope 2011 will be a year when the integrationist message of unity and peace will prevail. I am absolutely confident that Srikrishna Committee will not find evidence of discrimination against any of the three regions. This should give the Central Government maneuvering room to back-off from their original stance in support of division. Therefore, our singular focus in the New Year should be all about getting the truth out into masses that corruption, under development, and poverty are not a result of discrimination but are a result of bad governance.
On the personal front, I am relocating to India this month with my family. Moving back to India for our children’s education and to be close to our parents has been our plan for many years. Saying that, I did contemplate quitting work and dedicating my time to the integrationist cause for a year or two. However, all the activities we conducted this year made me realize that raising funds is a significant challenge. I therefore decided to continue to work out of India, as it will enable me to support the Samaikyandhra efforts for 2011- at least initially.
I would like to take this opportunity to solicit your advice on what we can do in 2011 to fight against separatism. I am particularly interested in your ideas about ways in which we can influence the people of Nizam region. If you prefer to meet me in person in Hyderabad, please shoot me a note.
2011 is going to be a crucial year. Don’t leave it up to political leaders, the fate of our culture, our history, and our heritage, which are second to none. Let us all do our bit and fight the separatist propaganda machine in our own small ways. Let us make Rudramadevi, Krishnadevarayalu, Venkatappayya, Potti Sriramulu, Ravi Narayan Reddy, Burugula and many more of our ancestors proud with our FEARLESS commitment to the cause of unity.
Save Andhra Pradesh!
I held on to my comments till the cat out of the bag 🙂 . Now that the confused and utterly non-conclusive report is out, I am feeling happy that your good work did help. I am a bit of a history buff myself and I learned more history from your interviews. The issue is plain and simple, lack of more telangana people who support the integration. There is no quick solution for bringing more telangana people to the “Samaikya” fold when the mass media is tinkering with public opinions in matter of minutes. One solution is to start a debate on the ever spinning TV9 about the development activities done by TRS MLA’s in their constituency for the past 7 years. This topic should be raised by both TD and Cong MLA’s focusing in the lack of “commitment” to Telangana cause by TRS. I hope that will open eyes for more Telangana people.
Topics such as roads in Telangana region might help.
The roads in Karim Nagar did not change a bit since 2003. And who the hell is in-charge there ? Then take a look how Cudappa roads got better. Forget big things , TRS cannot even maintain the roads and municipality.
This is just my .02.
First of all I want to commend you for the commitment and dedication that you have allocated for this cause, in spite of all the odds. I wish you all success. If not in the short term, the points raised by you will no doubt be noted by all walks of people of all regions, eventually.
Well, regarding any ideas to counter the arguments and to carry the debate in a sane way, from the top of my head here are some. I don’t think these are any new, but I am presenting them anyway. In fact many of them are based on the information from your book. The fact of the matter is that, it is the Nizam Telangana area that will be losing in this bargain, if separate state is given, in the long run. Other regions also will lose, but the loss will be more for Telangana.
1. We should take the point that, with the state divided our resources will be divided. Divided that too in a disproportionate way. Each region alone is not self-sufficient. Some have fertile lands, some have forests and some have mines. It will be a gross waste to indulge in a trade for these with each other or in any other arrangement and it leads to higher cost of living. Anyone who can use some common sense can easily get this point. To give an example, China now controls 95% of rare-earth metals, metals like lithium. So they can have monopoly which is not good and they can demand whatever they want.
2. We will lose the power of collective bargaining when it comes to achieving anything. Just take the case of river waters, even united we lost in the bargain as recently as few days ago with Tribunal on Krishna water. Once divided we will not have the political capital to counter any such thing from happening. We don’t have a political system like it is here in US where the electoral college stuff enables even smaller states to have a say (senate members are two per state however big or small). So states like California will not and cannot dominate to garner all the benefits. We cannot have bigger budgets and hence bigger projects, be it to link all rivers or be it to harness the coastal power. Telengana will lose access to coast and will be strategically at a loss. We can see how much population resides in mid-west vs. coasts here in US. The leaders in Telangana are shooting themselves in their foot.
3. The bone of contention here is Hyderabad. It has been built by the sweat and blood of people from all regions. Why would anyone want to lose their hard earned anything? Are these guys crazy to think this thing will go smoothly? It will be seen a day time robbery to claim Hyderabad as Telangana’s part. Moreover Hyderabad has attracted lot of people from other regions, mainly because of the potential of human resources. If there is any perception that this place is based on regional language or a political system dandagiri, people will be reluctant to invest in there as much as if it is undivided and cosmopolitan. There will be some investment, but it will dwindle.
4. As a culture also, we lose lot of our uniqueness. It increases any of the already existing chasms and it will not be very friendly. We lose our dignity as Telugu people and will known by other regions for our infighting rather than our cultural prowess.
The issue here as you pointed is, how best we can get points like this into masses. It is already late but never too late. Since the ambient temperature has been raised and emotionally charged, many such arguments will sure fall on deaf years, but I hope the committee’s report will pave a way to induce a cool down of these charged situations eventually and people will think coolly. The guys who want to raise the ruckus need to be exposed in the right way so that people should realize they are being hood-winked and robbed of their rightful future.
Again I wish you all the best in your endeavor and I don’t need to mention but please take a pragmatic approach for whatever you are striving to achieve.
Thank you Mohan garu.
Good list of accomplishments. Have a nice time in India. I am sure we will be in touch.
It does look like SKC report is challenging many of the key Telangana separatist claims. We have to wait and see.