Sense of deprivation grips Kurnool
Sense of Deprivation Grips Kurnool, The sense of deprivation that gripped the Seemandhra people following the State bifurcation is more palpable among the denizens of Kurnool.
- Demand for reviving old capital gaining momentum
- Integrationists apprehensive of agitation for R State
Hyderabad: The sense of deprivation that gripped the Seemandhra people following the State bifurcation is more palpable among the denizens of Kurnool, which was the Andhra capital from 1953 to 1956. They are getting restive, as the city did not figure in the list of places being examined for the new capital. Reports that Kurnool was not among the priorities of the Sivaramakrishna Committee, tasked with the responsibility of finalising the capital site, annoyed them. They are upset that Kurnool is not in the options of leaders of principal parties.
The demand to make Kurnool the capital is gaining momentum. It is obviously a major election issue. Cutting across party lines, leaders have been mounting pressure on the Centre. Many are apprehensive of the fall-out of locating the capital elsewhere. Integrationists fear that it would help strengthen the separatist forces demanding Rayalaseema State. ‘We had to forego Kurnool as capital for the sake of Telugu people’s unity. We had to forego our waters (from Tungbhadra) to people of Bellary for national integration. We made many sacrifices for Telugu people’s unity. We cannot bear this anymore’, warns former Kurnool Mayor D Raghurami Reddy.
He wants Kurnool as the political and economic hub. Otherwise the region would once again witness turmoil. Many capitals were moved from one city to another for genuine reasons. Even the Russian capital was shifted from Moscow to St Petersburg in 1712. But Moscow was revived in 1918 for administrative reasons. ‘Our demand would not be given up.’
M. Sudhakar Babu, MLC, feels Kurnool was still an option before the Centre. ‘Our claim cannot be ignored. Otherwise it would lead to further complications’. Kurnool is better equipped to be the new capital. It would be closer to north coastal Andhra. Reviving capital in Kurnool will spur development in Rayalaseema, Dr. Kotte Chinnaiah, president, Government Lecturers’ Association said. It can accommodate over half a lakh employees. The RGIA airport is only 150 km away. It would help save huge public money on rebuilding such infrastructure.
Somasekhar, co-convener, Samaikhyandhra JAC, recalled that Rayalaseema people lost Chennai as their capital. Thereafter they were forced to give up Kurnool. One more blow was dealt to them with the State’s bifurcation. Kurnool merits consideration as the new capital. Otherwise there would be a much bigger agitation for a separate Rayalaseema, he averred.