After Telangana Rashtra Samiti president K Chandrasekhara Rao's 11-day fast forced the United Progressive Alliance government to concede to his demand for a separate Telangana state, some angry Congress leaders from Andhra Pradesh have threatened to go on a fast-unto-death themselves, to make the Centre reconsider its decision.
Congress Member of Parliament from Vijaywada Lagdapati Rajagopal has declared that he will sit on a fast-unto-death in front of the state legislative assembly to protest the bifurcation of the state.
Not to be left behind, YS Vivekananda Reddy, younger brother of late Chief Minister Y S Rajasekhara Reddy, also declared his intentions of going on a fast-unto-death to demand an united Andhra Pradesh.
Incidentally, Rajagopal, one of the first MPs to offer his resignation over the issue, is also the richest MP from the state and a prominent businessman with interests in power and real estate sector. He is the promoter of a multi-million rupee township in Hyderabad, which will reportedly become the capital of Telangana after its creation.
Congress Member of Legislative Assembly TG Venkatesh, a leading businessman from Kurnool, has also been at the fore-front of the anti-Telangana campaign. Congress legislator from Anantapur J C Diwakar Reddy, who heads various businesses including one of private transport, was the first MLA to tender his resignation.
Rajagopal demanded that once the resolution on Telangana is moved in the state assembly, members of all parties should be allowed to vote according to their conscience, and no whip should be issued by the party high command.
Member of Legislative Council YS Vivekannda Reddy warned that the Centre's decision to form Telangana state had come as a shock for the people of Rayalseema. Such a decision was against the wishes and vision of YSR, Reddy said, adding that the late CM's supporters would not sit quiet over the issue.