Students on warpath
Telangana Students Leaders Demands Party Tickets. The student leaders, who played a key role in the Telangana movement, are now seeking to play a constructive role in development of the State, demanding their say in political affairs of the state.
- Keen to take part in reconstruction of T
- Say they have sacrificed careers for new State
- Demand that parties allot tickets to them
- If not, they plan to contest as independents
- Will even pit themselves against top leaders
T student leaders demand their due
The student leaders, who played a key role in the Telangana movement, are now seeking to play a constructive role in development of the State, demanding their say in political affairs of the state.
The leaders want all political parties to allot 10 per cent of tickets to the student leaders who have actively participated in the movement. There are about 30 leaders who are harbouring hopes to dabble in politics, but only Ravi Pidamarthi has so far been assured ticket by the TRS. The others are waiting for April 4, when the TRS and the Congress are expected to announce candidate lists.
The student leaders are against lobbying for tickets. “Why should we lobby for tickets? We have sacrificed our careers and fought for the cause. We have all the rights to demand tickets,” said Bala Laxmi, a student leader. But, the student leaders are not as united as they used to be during the T movement. There are no efforts to pursue tickets collectively for all the deserving candidates.
They are so determined about foraying into politics that they are even ready to contest as independents if the parties deny them tickets. “If parties refuse to allot us tickets, we will question the parties in public. We will contest against top leaders of all the parties in Telangana as independent candidates. We know we cannot win, but we will make sure they will lose. We have the support of students and families of martyrs. A mere call saw participation of nearly 5 lakh students at Vidyarthi Garjana held at Osmania University recently,” said Bala Lakshmi.
Karate Raju, a leader of TSJAC who is aspiring for the Kalwakurthy Devarakadra Assembly seat, said, “Telangana state is the result of sacrifices made by students. It is the responsibility of all political parties to see that the students get due recognition in the allotment of tickets and ensure their active participation in the rebuilding of Telangana state as legislators.”
Another leader Daruvu Yellanna is more vociferous: “1,200 students took part in the T movement and KCR cannot expect that students would rally behind him by giving only one ticket. Every student dreams of taking part in Telangana Navanirman (rebuilding Telangana), and a good number of them should be made part of the rebuilding process.”
The leaders stated that 11 to 13 per cent of public representatives are tainted. “Why not send 10 per cent of students who are educated to the legislative houses. We are educated and know about the politics, why not us?” they question. Some students allege that the parties which used students for the movement are going back when it comes to fielding them in the polls. However, the heavy competition for tickets among students is also leading to tussle among them, with the result that they are divided along caste lines.