Centre's statement evokes strong reaction from Telangana groups

Hyderabad, Jan 27 (IANS) The centre's statement that it needs more time to take a decision on the demand for separate statehood to Telangana has evoked sharp reaction from Telangana groups while Seemandhra leaders have hailed it.

Accusing the Congress of once again betraying the people, the Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) decided to launch an agitation targeting Congress ministers, MPs and state legislators in the region.

TRS leader K. Tarakarama Rao demanded resignation of all Congress MPs and ministers to pressurize the central government to concede their demand.

Leaders of Telangana Joint Action Committee, which launched two-day protest here Sunday, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), Communist Party of India (CPI) and Telangana leaders of Telugu Desam Party (TDP) condemned the statements of Union Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde and Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad.

Shinde, who had said after all-party meeting on Dec 28 that the government will decide on the issue within a month, stated in Delhi Sunday evening that they need more time. He said the consultations on the issue were on.

Earlier, Azad told reporters that more consultations were needed on the issue. He said the party would consult chief minister, state party chief and leaders from all three regions of the state. He also made it clear that no deadline was set for completing the consultations.

There were mixed reactions to their statements from the Congress leaders in Telangana. Some MPs said they were disappointed but hoped that the centre would soon take a positive decision. "We will meet to chalk out our future course of action," said S. Rajaiah, one of the MPs.

State minister K. Jana Reddy was hopeful that despite the delay, Congress would take a decision in tune with the aspirations of the people of Telangana.

Congress leaders from Seemandhra (Rayalaseema and Andhra regions), who were actively lobbying against the state's division, hailed the central government's announcement. State minister G. Srinivasa Rao said it was clear from Shinde's statement that the state would remain undivided.

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