The Telugu Desam president, Mr N. Chandrababu Naidu, will skip the Srikrishna panel when it meets political parties. The party will adopt a strategy similar to the one it adopted when the Union home minister, Mr P. Chidambaram, called an all-party meeting to discuss the Telangana issue. Two groups representing the TD from Telangana and Seema Andhra regions will make a representation before the committee when it meets them.
The TRS will be the first party to meet the panel in New Delhi and later in Hyderabad. While the Telangana TD leaders will seek bifurcation of the state, the Seema Andhra leaders of the party are yet to seek an appointment. Party sources said Seema Andhra leaders led by Mr P. Keshav and Mr D. Narendra will also seek an appointment here. “We have sought an appointment on April 23. Our stand is clear. We want Telangana,” Dr S. Venugopala Chari, TD vice-president and MLA, told this newspaper.
Asked if Mr Naidu will meet the panel, he quipped, “Will the Congress chief, Mrs Sonia Gandhi meet the panel? If she does, we will think about it. As of now the representatives from both the regions will meet the panel.” Dr Chari said there is a vertical split in the TD over Telangana just as it is in the Congress and hence there were two representations.
“Though the TD is a disciplined party, the opinion is divided on Telangana,” he remarked.
Meanwhile, the war of words between TD Seema Andhra and Telangana leaders intensified. The Telangana TD leaders Dr Nagam Janardhan Reddy and Dr Chari took strong exception to the comments of party floor leader in the council, Mr Dadi Veerabhadhra Rao that the party need not stick to the decision favouring Telangana after it lost the polls.
“The TD is committed to Telangana. It was discussed in the politburo and got approved. We were committed to it in the 2009 elections too. The statement of Mr Veerabhadhra Rao is not correct,” he said.