consultations on Telangana issue were set to begin Saturday as
Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N. Kiran Kumar Reddy, his deputy
Damodar Rajanarasimha and state Congress chief Botsa Satyanarayana
rushed to the national capital.
Former state Congress chief D. Srinivas also air-dashed to Delhi,
where another key leader K. Chiranjeevi is already camping.
Governor E.S.L. Narasimhan, who landed in Delhi Friday, will meet
Home Minister P. Chidambaram and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh
Saturday and submit his report on the situation in Telangana,
where indefinite strike for a separate state entered 26th day.
The governor, chief minister, deputy chief minister and state
Congress president have all been summoned by the central
leadership as the consultations to solve the vexed problem entered
a crucial phase.
Congress leaders from Telangana hope the leadership would make a
key announcement later in the day.
Congress core committee members -- Pranab Mukherjee, Chidambaram,
A.K. Antony, Ghulam Nabi Azad and party president Sonia Gandhi's
political secretary Ahmed Patel -- met in Delhi Friday evening.
Azad, who is in-charge of party affairs in Andhra Pradesh, told
reporters the meeting was inconclusive.
It was at this meeting the leaders decided to summon the state
leadership to the national capital.
As the strike by government employees, transport and coal workers
in Telangana has paralysed administration, road transport and
triggered electricity crisis, the central government is under
pressure to find an early solution to the problem.
According to sources in Congress, the leadership may make a
statement which can convince Telangana groups and help to put an
end to the strike.
Leaders of Telangana Joint Action Committee (JAC) had called on
the prime minister earlier this week and urged him to immediately
initiate the process for formation of a Telangana state.
Azad, who held consultations with Congress leaders from Telangana,
Rayalaseema and coastal Andhra regions last week, submitted his
report to Sonia Gandhi.
Seeking more time to find a solution, Azad had said they need to
hold consultations at the national level.