The turmoil that accompanied the bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh still continues. The ongoing tussle between Andhra Pradesh chief minister N Chandrababu Naidu and his Telangana counterpart K Chandrasekhar Rao has reached the Centre. Mr Naidu has accused the Telangana CM of tapping his telephone among other things and has also asked the Centre to implement Section 8 of the Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Act, which gives special powers to the governor with regard to control over law and order in Hyderabad, the common capital for both the states till 2024.
The TRS has accused Mr Naidu’s party, the TDP, of bribing an Anglo-Indian MLA and claimed to have in its possession a telephone conversation between the Anglo-Indian nominee to the legislature and Mr Naidu. Unfortunately, in this ugly spat between the two, governance has taken a beating and with it investor confidence has also dipped.
In a federal set-up, it is natural for states to approach the Centre to resolve differences, but this is a lengthy process and often one side is disappointed with the final solution. In tackling their differences, the two leaders should show political maturity. They must realise that the journey for both the states — Andhra Pradesh in its new form and Telangana as a new state — has just begun. The decisions they take and the disputes they create now will have far-reaching consequences on the future of both the states. Being neighbours, both the leaders must put aside their egos and discuss unresolved issues. It is this spirit of cooperative federalism that the people expect from their leaders. Though the states were bifurcated a year ago, there is still a lot of unfinished business between the two.
Much of the current tension between both the states is largely because of the haphazard manner in which the UPA dealt with the demand for a new state. The messy bifurcation should serve as a lesson on how not to divide existing states into smaller entities without a proper workable plan. It is now up to Mr Naidu and Mr Rao to focus on development and progress for the benefit of the people of the two states.