Telangana issue stalls Parliament

Cabinet likely to clear T-bill today

Telangana issue stalls Parliament

The UPA government faces a formidable challenge in its effort to bring in the Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Bill in Parliament in the ongoing session, as for the second day on Thursday proceedings in both houses were disrupted  over the Telangana and other issues.

The Lok Sabha proceedings during the day barely lasted for 17 minutes, while the Rajya Sabha transacted business only for about 10 minutes. In the lower house, the stiff opposition to the creation of a new state of Telangana prompted three members, including one from the Congress, to give notices of no-confidence against the UPA government.

In the midst of these parliamentary disruptions, it was not clear what strategy the government would adopt to ensure its stated objective of getting the bill passed in Parliament. Opposition parties, including the BJP that is in favour of bifurcation, have not shown any interest in helping the treasury benches to come out of the imbroglio. Opposition sources said that they were not keen on helping the government to sail out of the crisis. 

The UPA government, which appears to be pushing hard for creation of Telangana, has called a special Cabinet meeting on Friday to clear the state reorganisation bill. 

On Thursday, the Group of Ministers (GoM) on Telangana met in the afternoon to fine-tune the bill and consider suggestions from union ministers from Seemandhra to make Hyderabad a Union Territory. However, the matter did not come in the scheduled Cabinet meeting in the evening. The government is hoping to introduce the bill in Parliament on Monday or Tuesday. “Before this session of Parliament is over, we will bring the Telangana Bill to the House,” Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde said. 

After the scheduled Cabinet meeting on Friday, sources said, the Congress Core Committee will also meet and is likely to discuss the fate of Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Kirankumar Reddy, who staged a protest in Delhi and spearheaded the anti-Telangana protests against the interest of the party. 

The Lok Sabha witnessed pro and anti-Telangana MPs storming the well shouting slogans. While YSR Congress chief Y S Jagan Mohan Reddy and several members from Seemandhra were holding placards for “United Andhra Pradesh, those from Telangana wanted the bill for the separate state to be brought early. TRS chief K Chandrasekhar Rao and his party colleague Vijayashanthi were, however, in the aisle. 

In the Lok Sabha, the government also faced embarrassment with Congress MP from Seemandhra Sabbam Hari giving notice for a no-confidence motion against his own party-led government while M Venugopala Reddy of TDP and M Rajamohan Reddy of YSR Congress moved separate notices. 

However, Speaker Meira Kumar expressed her inability to ascertain the support for the notices in view of the disruptions. To accept a notice for no-confidence motion, the Speaker has to count that 50 members are favouring such a motion.

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