What happened last week on Thursday was an expression of people’s anguish. No political leaders or cultural troupes were allowed on Tank Bund by the police. As a result there was no one to guide the emotionally surcharged crowd. What happened thereafter was unfortunate and we feel for it. But then one also needs to remember that the Tank Bund is in Hyderabad and therefore in the heart of Telangana and when the people of the region find 26 of the 33 statues are of people from the other two regions, it does make them angry.
We want the government to maintain status quo for the next couple of months at least. The government should think from the point of view of the people and this includes the people of Telangana also, not just people from coastal Andhra and Rayalaseema. Do not make the issue bigger. When there has been a status quo maintained over the issue of Telangana for more than a year now, what is the big hurry in rushing to re install the statues on Tank Bund? It will only breed more negativity particularly if the same statues are reinstalled. I will myself oppose it as an individual.
If at all the government wants to install statues, then it needs to include those of Telangana heroes as well. Like freedom fighter and poet Kaloji Narayana Rao. Like Komaram Bheem.
Incidentally, the government order to install a statue of Komaram Bheem was issued when K Rosaiah was chief minister. I am given to understand that the government decreed that the funds should come from the kitty of the tribal welfare department. As if Komaram Bheem was only a tribal leader. Then how did the government now release Rs 78 lakh? Incidentally, when this decision to reinstall the statues was taken in the state assembly, no MLA from Telangana was present in the House.
We believe that it was a well-thought out strategy to allow Telangana activists on to Tank Bund, let the law and order situation to slip out of hand to show that the Telangana movement is not a peaceful movement. People’s emotions were running high and the government took advantage of it.