Sunday, January 31, 2010

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Telangana Human Chain: 3 February 2010

Things have changed in the last two days.  It has been decided by Telangana JAC to form the Human Chain right away – on 3 Feb 2010.  We will have to organize ourselves in a short period of time.

Donate

Send mail to thc2010editor@gmail.com if you are interested in donating for this event.  This money will be used for producing pamphlets to be distributed in villages and towns.

Meet up

Those interested will be meeting @ 3PM in Indira Park in Hyderabad on 30 Jan 2010 (Sunday).

Friday, January 29, 2010

Telangana Human Chain: Details

Map: Telangana

Many of the major towns and cities of Telangana are covered.  The total coverage is approximately 3500 Km.  The biggest problem will be to mobilize the people to the right part of the chain.  To ensure the chain is not uneven – that means more people at some sections and nobody during certain sections, we have to follow some guidelines.

Telangana Human Chain: Organization Structure


The organization structure is proposed as follows:

1.       One State Executive Committee for Telangana
a.       A 3-member State Executive Officers: consisting of President, Operating Officer, and Treasurer.
b.      A 7-member State Executive Members.
2.       An 8-10 member Board overseeing the activities of State Executive Committee.
3.       10 District Executive Teams for each District of Telangana
a.       Consisting of 1 District Executive Officer and 9 District Executive Members.
b.      Up to 20 Mandal Officers in each District, one for each Mandal in a District.
c.       Up to 20 Town Officers for each major Town/City.
4.       Up to 50 Volunteers for each Mandal.
5.       Each Volunteer to mobilize at least 1000 people for this event.

Telangana Human Chain: FAQ


How can I participate in this event?

This event is open to everyone, the children, the women, the grandparents, the disabled. You will have to come out of your home on 21st February, 2010, Sunday and travel to the nearest road that is designated on the map. Some of the volunteers may guide you if you have questions.  All you have to do is stand on the side of the designated roads and hold hands.  You can take time to form the chain but you should ensure that the chain is formed at least during 11:30 and 11:45.  Don’t worry about the breaks in the chain like at road crossings, at railway crossings, etc. However, there will be an attempt to keep it as continuous as possible.

How many people will join this event?

We are planning on assembling 1 Crore people for this event. That means everyone in Telangana should do their best to participate in this event. We have only 3.5 Crore people in our state. That means we need a huge turnout for this event to succeed. Therefore, let everyone know about this event. Encourage them to participate in this event. Bring everyone you know for this occasion.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Why Telangana Human Chain?


In 1969 Telangana Agitation, more than 370 people were killed; more than 50,000 people were arrested; thousands were injured.  In 1971, Telangana Praja Samiti (TPS) won 11 out of 14 Lok Sabha seats, and yet Telangana state was not formed.  And in the last 40 years, people of Telangana have endured the shame and ignominy, but did not lose hope.  They continued to harbor a hope that one day we will get our Telangana, what is now called ‘Telangana Sentiment’. 

In 2000, when three new states of Chattisgarh, Uttarakhand and Jharkhand were created, Telangana was on the top of the list.  And yet, Telangana was put on hold only because Chandrababu Naidu, the then CM of Andhra Pradesh, who had lent his support to NDA, did not support statehood to Telangana.

In 2001, Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS), a new political party was formed with a single point manifesto, to bring statehood to Telangana.  It formed an alliance with Y S Rajashekar’s (YSR) Congress, which shared the agenda of TRS.  In the elections of 2004, Congress won in AP with help of TRS but went back on its promises.  Once again people of Telangana lost out to the devious and quirky Indian politics. 

Monday, January 25, 2010

When will these state divisions stop?

Once P Chidambaram set the ball rolling for separation of Telangana state on 9th December 2009, there were similar demands coming from various other regions in India. One was from Gorkhas, currently in West Bengal, who have been asking for a separate state for a long time now. The other is Vidarbha from Maharashtra which was proposed even by NDA government but was kept in cold storage. Mayawati proposed trifurcation of Uttar Pradesh into Bundelkhand, Hitesh Pradesh, and Purvanchal.
 
Lot of people, especially those who are not exactly entangled in Telangana and Andhra issues, are asking one question – when will these divisions end? Will it result in breakup of India? It looks like Telangana has opened a Pandora’s Box.
 
Doubts about India




Many British politicians including Winston Churchill prognosticated that India will instantly break up into hundred pieces because they will fight each other and go separate way. Many other observers of those times felt the same. Just look at India of 1947. It had so many religions, so many cultures, so many languages, and so many kingdoms. It looked similar to multicultural, multiethnic, multilingual Europe. How could such a continent live as a country?
 
And yet it looks like we have disproved many pundits. India is going strong in economy, human development, science and technology, industry, agriculture, military, etc. India remains a vibrant, strong and united nation even after sixty years.
 

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Telangana 40: Why blame all Andhras?

I consistently use the term Andhras as if it is a monolithic block knowing very well that such a generalization is fraught with many gaps, holes and weaknesses. When I blame Andhras for the plight of Telanganas, am I accusing each and every Andhra person individually for the crimes of discrimination, marginalization and domination? Is Andhra as homogenous as I portray it to be? Is it as monolithic as I portray it to be?
 
Not really. 
 
I know very well that not all Andhras have participated in the oppression of Telangana people. In fact, most of them, nearly 90% of them must be oblivious to the plight of Telangana. To most of them, it may come as a surprise that these Telanganas who have lived with them in their state are actually accusing them of such heinous crimes – of ruthless suppression and outright discrimination. 
 
They react to Telangana movement very innocently, under the melodramatic slogans of ‘united we stand, divided we fall’, ‘Telugu pride’, ‘kalasi unte kaladu sukham’, etc. Are these people, teachers, college girls, students, farmers, officers, government employees, living in Coastal Andhra and Rayalaseema guilty of the crimes I accuse them of? When did they discriminate any Telangana? When did they marginalize or dominate Telangana? Why do I think this innocent Andhra person is responsible for what happened to Telangana people?
 
Isn’t Sujai a bigot who is spreading the message of hate when he accuses each and every Andhra person? Isn’t he telling his Telangana brothers to hate Andhras?

India is Republic

On 26th January 2010, India celebrates 60 years of Republic.

What is a Republic?


Few months ago, I was sitting with a group of five to six young engineers who have graduated from colleges located in urban areas of India. I asked them what makes India Republic, and none of them could answer it. So, I went ahead and started asking the same question to many other people. Most of them didn’t know what made India republic. Some thought that republic meant the same as being independent; some said that we got a new constitution that day. Some said that we have our own army. And so on. Most of them couldn’t actually answer it right.

India is a republic because India elects its supreme head. They elect the President of India who is the supreme head of India. Though the President is indirectly elected through people’s representatives, it is still considered a republic.

England is not a republic because the supreme head of that country is a Queen who is not elected by the people. In the same way, many European countries are not republic – Denmark, Sweden, Spain, etc, continue to have a king or queen. Though these supreme heads are purely ceremonial and do not have the same power as elected leaders, still they are not considered republics. In India also, the elected President is mostly ceremonial and does not have the same power as elected leaders.

Telangana 40: Longest Human Chain - 21 Feb 2010

I propose we let the world know of our cause – through a simple and effective way. I am thinking of the longest human chain across Telangana - on a 21st February, 2010, Sunday - between 11:30 and 11:45. Nearly 1 Crore people have to be moved - creating a world record. That will get attention round the world. [The current record for longest human chain is 50 Lakhs.]
The message will be simple:
1. This is a people's movement.
2. We are all supporting creation of Telangana.
3. We are doing this to show our support because all other methods failed in India, legal, electoral, and democratic.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Telangana 39: Let’s Celebrate Telangana

Write here.

Write on this post the stories of Telangana Movement, how people of Telangana are celebrating it, protesting for it, taking initiatives for it; the ordinary people, the women folk, the grandparents, the kids... from Hyderabad to the interiors of Adilabad and Mahbubnagar. If you are living outside Telangana, call your parents and family and ask them how they are celebrating this event. Write here your experiences on how you came to support Telangana Movement.

This post will entertain only the stories from Telangana on how the movement is carried out, how the people are enjoying and celebrating creation of new Telangana, how people have came about to support Telangana Movement. If there are any Andhras who support Telangana Movement it would be great to hear from you.

All other comments will be deleted without warning. You are free to criticize on other posts.

I got inspired when Anand, a commenter, wrote:

…today the support for Pro Telangana is unbelievable in Hyderabad, I am just coming from family party of 500 gathering it’s unbelievable, cutting across the age group they are openly bracing the support for separate state…I didn’t see this before Sep 9th brother…

Telangana 38: Say No to consensus; Say Yes to Referendum

Don’t lose heart; don’t commit suicides

Some of the young people of Telangana, the future of Telangana, have been fighting for this cause for a long time now. Some of them have become completely active for the last 50 days, dedicating themselves to this cause of ours. Now, I find that some of them are dejected, and lost. They don’t know what’s happening. Why did India go back on its word? Why are our political parties breaking up from JAC? Why is there no unanimity amongst our political parties? They are disillusioned. They don’t get honest answers from their politicians. Will this agitation turn into another 1969? Will Telangana ever get freedom? Will Telanganas see the light what others in this country saw, of which we had a glimpse for only 8 eight years during 1948-56?
I want to convey this message to all those who are on the ground fighting for a separate state. We are with you. We will not relent; we will not back out this time; we will keep the pressure on till we get the state. It may take a bit longer; it may take a while, but Telangana will happen.
Yes, India has failed us consistently; its democracy is a sham; it’s not a perfect system; but it’s still better than many other nations and countries out there. We should keep our faith in it and its system. We should fight towards improving it. We should work with the system, within the system. Don’t turn away from the system. Let’s not create another Naxal Movement. All is not lost. It’s only the beginning. It took more than 30 years for Mahatma Gandhi et al to realize our freedoms. And that was from British. I am hoping that India will take care of its people better than British did. 

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Telangana 37: Let’s Andhraize Telangana

When Europeans occupied continents of South America, Asia, Africa as their colonies, they thought they were carrying the ‘white man’s burden’. They thought they had a divine mandate as a White Christian to civilize the barbarians and the natives. The white man justified the colonialism as just and fair means to educate and civilize the natives of these colonies. 

In 1956, when Andhras sought to merge with Telangana to form Andhra Pradesh, they were carrying the same legacy of Europeans that ruled them. They were now carrying ‘Andhra man’s burden’. They sought to Andhraize Telanganas to purify Telangana Telugu from the onslaught and influence of Urdu. They wanted to set an example and teach Telanganas what pure and chaste Telugu is all about. They introduced their version of Telugu to us in our text books and called our Telugu Vikruti, an abomination, an anomaly, that needs to be rectified and corrected.
Here is how some Andhras have written about Telangana Telugu on this blog.

Since my Telugu is not bastardized with Urdu words. It has much more pure Dravidian pronunciation of certain syllables and hence makes the language sound sweet and mellifluous. At least teach your kids good Telugu and not the gutter Telangana slang.

…you have to accept that Telangana Telugu is a corrupted version of Telugu, corrupted not by you or your ancestors, but by the great Nizam.

As long as Telangana Telugu is corrupted with Urdu words, Telangana Telugu will remain as a symbol of Telugu people oppression under Nizam.

If you want to fight, fight with the history and remove the Urdu words from Telangana Telugu to make it pure and free from Nizam oppression' reminder.

Andhra Telugu is pure Telugu whether u accept or not. Even though they were with Madras they were not affected by Tamilians.

Assalu ee telangana culture ante yemiti?? Nizam gaadi paalanalo, Urdhu chetha telugu ni rape chesthe vacchindhe telangana baaasha, anthena?? [Actually what is Telangana Culture? Under Nizam’s rule, when Telugu was raped by Urdu what we got is Telangana language, is it not?]

Andhra janaalaki intha kaalam, telangana baasha gurinchi antha theliyadhu, intha kaalam adhi kudaa teluge anukunnaam [Till today, Andhra people didn’t know about Telangana language. Andhras thought it was also Telugu]

Why do you want to be with us?

You don’t respect us, you don’t respect our language. You have an extremely low opinion of Telangana people and their language. And yet, you fight for a ‘united state’ forcing and coercing us into submission so that we remain with you against our will. Why do you want to be with us with you when you have absolutely no understanding of Telangana or its people, when you think that our culture and language is a bastardized, raped, and corrupted version of Telugu while you maintain that you have a pure culture?

Andhraize

Your words to describe your efforts to civilize us reek of Aryan supremacy theories propounded in Europe during early 1900s and under Nazism. When you colonized Telangana did you really think that you could Andhraize Telangana? Make us civilized and less impure?

You did all you could for nearly 53 years to make us feel ashamed of our language, and yet we defied all your attempts.
We refused to purify our language according to your tastes. We refused to concede our language is a shame. 

Instead, we took pride in our history and culture, whether it included oppression or not, whether we were raped or not, whether it is corrupted or not. At the end of the day, this is what we speak- this is the language we feel comfortable with. This is the language we express ourselves in. This is the language that brought us revolutionary songs to inspire us the take on the rule of Nizam then and the rule of Andhras now. This is the language of our plight, our sorrows, our experiences, our suppression, and also our pride. 

Why do you even like Hyderabad?

Sometimes I don’t even understand why you like Hyderabad.
It has its own cosmopolitan culture into which you don’t fit into at all. You are fairly homogenous group and have absolutely no cosmopolitan character. All cosmopolitan cities inherit influences from various regions, various religions, and various languages, whereas you try to keep your language and culture pure protecting it from all outside influences. How does that make it cosmopolitan?

In Hyderabad, we speak differently. We use the words like ‘Jaldi raa’ easily mixing Urdu and Telugu whenever we feel like. We take pride in such mixing. We are not ashamed of it. You find yourself strangers in this city and in this region when you try stick to your purist theories.
 
You have never attempted to understand us, our culture and our history. Yes, we have a checkered past with Nizam and the legacy of Muslim rule, but those are our problems and we have our own solutions. You have absolutely no idea how to address them and when you try to give solutions, you actually make a joke of yourself. You have many misconceptions about us and our history. We don’t want to overthrow the legacy of Nizam or the influence of Urdu on our language. We are quite happy with our language the way it is. 

We play Holi and fly kites, we have our distinct ways of celebrating our festivals which are quite secular in nature. We have peerilu where both Hindus and Muslims participate in a joint celebration. The reason why Hyderabad has become famous and developed is mostly because of its openness in embracing all cultures and languages. It has embraced you as well without putting up a fight. However, your attempts to make it purely Telugu city are now rejected. Your attempts to monopolize it for only Telugu people are now rejected.

Your attempts to Andhraize Hyderabad or Telangana are rebuffed. Your sermons fall on deaf ears. It’s high time you understand that.
 
Nazi Theories

Your attempts to keep your culture and language pure are synonymous with Nazi ideologies. Telangana people are quite comfortable with mixing. Telangana people are a mixed culture, we have influences from many regions, those of Kannada and Maratha, and many of them have cross-border relations with those regions. We have Gujaratis, Tamils, Punjabis, Marathas, Kannadas, Hindus, Muslims, Sikhs and Christians amidst us. Each of them has influenced us which we have accepted quite openly. 

Two different versions of our state

Once again Andhras and Telangana differ on what Andhra Pradesh means to us. For Andhras, it is all about keeping Telugu pure and chaste, keep it Hindu, away from other languages and religions, and keep it a protected region away from other influences. For Telanganas, it is all about mixing, evolving, and embracing new cultures and new influences without having to worry about impurities. We are proud of our biryani and our sakinaalu without having to think whether it is authentic Telugu or Hindu. We will continue to embrace others as long as they don’t impose themselves onto us. 

It’s clear that we have completely two different views of our state. We don’t want to be pure like you. We believe that languages evolve, that cultures evolve, that they embrace influences without having to resist them. We do not think there is a pure version and impure version for a language. We are not making attempts to enforce our language onto anyone. Instead we are sick and tired of being imposed by Andhras who have colonized us trying to impose their version of purity onto us.
 
This is high time we rejected this experiment called Andhra Pradesh. We are two different people and have different view on what this Andhra Pradesh meant to us. You can be the torch bearers of pure Telugu. We are open to the influences. This is high time Telangana is its own so that its identity, however impure or corrupt, is given its voice and expression.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Telangana 36: Did Andhras marginalize Telanganas?

In this blog, I have consistently used the following words to characterize the relationship between Andhras and Telanganas in the merged state called Andhra Pradesh with a history of 53 years. I said that Andhras have discriminated, marginalized, and dominated Telanganas leading to oppression of Telangana people.
 
When I use those words I know exactly what I am trying to convey. It is not exaggeration or case of using bombastic words to catch attention of my readers. In this post I would like to talk about marginalization and domination of Telanganas. 

A modern pluralistic multicultural multiethnic democratic nation is not run as a game of basketball where the best team wins the game, nor is it live example of ‘survival of the fittest’ where the best group survives while the inferior one just dies out. It is high time we understood that an ‘award for excellence’ is different from ‘access to opportunity’; most Indians confuse these two. Getting a gold medal in Olympics is an award for excellence, but getting basic education and job for livelihood is access to opportunity. While the award for excellence is not a privilege nor is it guaranteed to everyone, the access to opportunity comes as a promise from the nation to every citizen. 

Basketball games and fight for food

If in 10 games of NBA, Spurs win over Hornets all the ten times, then it may be reasoned that Spurs are a better team. A score of 10-0 is celebrated as hallmark of excellence. It is not considered unfair practice. However, in a modern nation, if region A bags all the projects against region B resulting in a score of 10-0, it is considered unfair and downright discriminatory. Any observer would conclude that region B is being marginalized by region A. 

Suppose there are two kids in a home, one 6-year old and another 3-year old, where all food items are placed high enough so that the kids have to jump up and grab them whenever they are hungry. The taller and older 6-year old kid will end up grabbing all the food while the 3-year old will remain undernourished and emaciated. His growth will be stunted. He will get few morsels only when older kid leaves something after he has stuffed himself to the full. As time progresses, the gap between the kids starts widening making it impossible for the younger kid to catch up. 

If a parent continues the practice of ‘You fight it out. Let’s see who wins’, it is not considered a fair practice. Food on a daily basis cannot be an award. It is the basic resource by which both the kids get their sustenance. 

Modern nations

Modern nations don’t run like basketball games or fight for food practices. They don’t hold competitions between regions to give awards for excellence. They promise guarantees and abide by them. Even the smallest and weakest section of society is taken care of with preferential treatment. Modern nations do not allow the majorities and the privileged to marginalize and dominate the minorities and the underprivileged.
 
Instead, modern nations act like fair parents and they don’t allow the kids to fight each other to grab the food. It allocates a fair share to each; and they stop the kid who tries to grab it from the other. Jobs, water, funds are not up for grabs. They are promised to certain region based on an agreed formula. When you deviate from that agreed formula the parents step into make corrections. 

Andhras don’t share the same idea of a modern nation. They think it is an NBA game or a match of ‘fight for survival’. In Andhra Pradesh, Telanganas were forced to compete with Andhras on jobs, water, energy, funds for various projects including colleges and schools, hospitals, positions in the government, where Andhras have clearly won over Telanganas. Andhras think it is a fair game – an open competition. They don’t think that bagging all the jobs or getting more water amounts to marginalization. Instead they laud themselves on their ability to win against Telanganas. 

Marginalization

Over a period of time, politicians of Andhras have consistently tried to win for their constituencies, and what aided them were advantages of early start where all top positions in administration were occupied by Andhras, clout of majority where State Assembly was dominated by Andhras overpowering minority Telanganas, and also a more unified and concerted stand because Andhras are more homogenous in their composition than Telanganas.
 
There may not be a single leader who has led this campaign of marginalization and domination, and there may not be a hidden agenda. But Andhras who were in a better position to win the race have ignored the promises they made to give fair share to Telanganas. They didn’t care to step back and think if what they were doing was indeed fair. Each generation of selfish Andhras, aided and supported by innocent and ignorant Andhras, has consistently marginalized Telanganas leading to decimation of Telangana’s ability to put up a credible fight. Andhras kept winning and Telanangas kept losing. Andhras thought they were receiving awards for their excellence while in fact Telanganas were losing out on all their access to opportunities.

Andhra and Telanganas were on two different planes about what Andhra Pradesh meant for each of us. For Telanganas it was formed on a set of agreements and promises. For Andhras it was an open competition where every resource was up for grabs, where the winner takes all.
 
According to India Today, 28 December 2009, during YSR tenure, 26 projects have been allocated to irrigate 43 lakh hectares in Andhra-Rayalaseema but only 16 lakh hectares in Telangana. Though Telangana constitutes 40% in land area and population it gets 27% in irrigation.

In a recent GO 1845 of December 2009 for road and bridge constructions, only 9.31 Crores was allocated to Telangana while Andhra got 103.53 Crores.

By 1985, Andhras were unfairly given 125,000 jobs that belonged to Telanganas. Though the GO 610 to correct this was supposed to be implemented by 1986, it remains unimplemented even now. 

This is only a snapshot of what is happening NOW. The history of Andhra Pradesh is full of such unfair sanctions. In the first 13 years of Andhra Pradesh, funds from Telangana were diverted to fund Andhra. After 1969 agitation, Andhra Pradesh stopped showing records of revenues and expenses for each region so that people will never know what’s happening. Only in the recent time with the RTI Act, the Telangana Movement got another boost because the data is now available; and the data reeks of outright marginalization of Telangana people. 

It is clear from every source that Andhras, with Andhra politicians at the forefront, with selected few in the administration, backed and supported by the people of Andhras, have consistently marginalized Telanganas on almost every front.
 
And yet, Andhras are not apologetic about it. Andhras don’t take responsibility for what happened to Telanganas. Not a single Andhra openly admits what they have done. They don’t even concede that Telanganas were marginalized. No amount of data is going to make them realize this. If Telanganas lost out, they think it is because of Telanganas’ incompetence, inefficiency, internal squabbling, corrupt politicians, or simply an act of fate.
 
In fact, even the current agitation for separate Telangana is seen as reverse domination, where Telangana is ‘unfairly’ grabbing Hyderabad. Andhras feel they are getting a bad deal. When they fight for Hyderabad they think it is a fair fight. Most innocent and ignorant Andhras are oblivious to this, but when they participate in an agitation for Samaikya Andhra and support their politicians, they are in fact only continuing the domination of Andhras over Telanganas. 

Domination

Within the first few years of formation of Andhra Pradesh, Andhras have completely nullified all points of Gentlemen’s Agreement and then went onto annul two subsequent accords. In 1973, they went on a mass agitation to nullify a Supreme Court decision using their power of majority. Whenever Telanganas unified to make their case, Andhras resorted to utter domination by taking the State Assembly to indefinite adjournment. The same happened after P Chidambaram announced steps towards separate Telangana on 9 December 2009. 

Dismal scores

In game of Andhra Pradesh, Andhras are leading Telanganas by 200-0. Telanganas are consistently losing. Andhras do not think they have done anything wrong. They think they are Spurs beating down the Hornets, or the taller kid winning all the food awards because he is taller and fit. When Telanganas protest, Andhras call them a crybaby. They urge Telanganas to buck up, catch up, on their own, and be in the race like a true sportsman. They want to keep going in this game called Andhra Pradesh where they can take the satisfaction that they will be beating Telanganas ceaselessly for another fifty years if necessary. 

Telanganas don’t think that it is a fair game. They don’t think it is a game at all. They complain that this nation has not protected their interests as a good parent. Telanganas don’t want to compete with Andhras in any game. They want their own state and want to live on their own terms. May be the life as a separate Telangana will be harsh, but at least they know that they will not be oppressed all the time. 
 
And if Andhras are even a bit mature, they will concede they have marginalized and dominated Telanganas. Maybe it was done inadvertently, but they would apologize; and would let go of Telangana and its cities. If I were Andhra, that’s what I would do, apologize.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Telangana 35: Intensify the agitation

There are many opponents to Telangana Movement. Primary opponents are politicians and people of Andhra, Rayalaseema in Andhra Pradesh. Opponents outside Andhra Pradesh include West Bengal and Maharashtra governments who fear their states will be broken up if Telangana is given. Then there are many people in India who foolishly believe that carving up new states is tantamount to breaking up the nation. Then there are some who have apprehensions that Muslims will dominate in a state, that Maoists will rule, or that it will be a national security problem.

The opponents of separate Telangana are intensifying their campaign to demonize Telangana Movement. First, they rubbished Telangana Movement as a pet project of KCR who is doing this only for personal gains. They harangued Telanganas to see through KCR's villainy and urged us not to follow him. When all parties of Telangana started to join hands to support Telangana cause, it was clear that KCR/TRS is not the only party that supports Telangana. They changed their tactics. Next, they started a mass hysteria campaign to inculcate fear amongst settlers in Hyderabad saying that Telanganas will either kick them out or kill them. They equated Telanganas with Kashmiri terrorists and militants and urged rest of India to see how dangerous Telanganas have become. When many Telangana leaders tried to calm the fears of settlers saying nobody is going to harm them, they changed their tactics once again. After the student Garjana of Jan 3 in Osmania University, where many black-shawl clad singers sang Telangana songs, the opponents characterized it as a Naxal movement. They describe the entire region as Naxalana.

People outside Telangana do not take pains to understand that it was Naxals who embraced many of Telangana symbols in their fight and not the other way around. Telangana and its symbols existed even before Naxalism came into this region.

Many visitors to India may look at our swastikas on temples and food products and think that Hindus are all Nazis. Though it is a wrong characterization it could happen. Most people do not take time to understand how these symbols originate. Many non-Telanganas equate a black-shawl draped singer to a Naxalite because of the few movie clips they have seen. It is up to people of Telangana to fight this characterization and tell the world that it is a genuine people movement. Just because Naxals have endorsed Telangana cause, it will not become a Naxal Movement. Right now, BJP overwhelmingly endorses Telangana state, does that make our cause a Hindutva Movement? Tomorrow if MIM endorses Telangana, will it become an Islamic Movement?

In my previous article, 32: Don’t give in. Don’t give up., I urged people of Telangana, and in particular, TS-JAC, to intensify the agitation. Here I would like to suggest few ways of bringing more people into the fold.

1. Longest hand holding in India:

Organize a huge hand holding event where people from all over Telangana will participate to connect various towns and cities. Create India Record or if possible World Record. It will draw attention of media countrywide and it can be used to showcase our massive support of Telangana.

2. Mahila Garjana

Recently, when you had organized student Garjana, Andhras and Central Government said it was supported by Naxalites. Now, organize a Garjana for women of Telangana. Let the world know that even women of Telangana support our cause.

3. Largest people singing one song

Set India record or World record for largest gathering of people singing one song. Choose one Telangana song and popularize it through distributing CDs, cassettes, pamphlets, and play it in villages and towns on autos and rickshaws so that everyone has listened to it. Use media for help. Set the gathering in a town of Telangana (not Hyderabad).

4. Use national media to spread the message

Dispel the myths. Create spokesmen for Telangana cause who can articulate its position to the world. Let the world understand that it is a genuine people’s movement, a very old movement, and that it is a movement based in all the right reasons.