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Saturday, August 13, 2011

TELENGANA TANGLE: Telangana replacing Andhra, at least on boards!

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Mohammad Shafeeq, IANS / / Last Updated : 13 Aug 2011.

HYDERABAD: Telangana state may be a distant dream given the centre's reluctance to bifurcate Andhra Pradesh but the people seeking it are giving expression to their demand in their own way.

From boards of government offices to names of eateries and from educational institutions to number plates of vehicles, Telangana is fast replacing Andhra Pradesh.

As the pro-Telangana movement intensifies with mass resignations of public representatives cutting across party lines and proposals of indefinite strikes, the districts in the region are witnessing a new trend.

The groups fighting for separate state are changing the boards of the government offices in their strongholds like Warangal, Karimnagar and Medak.

The name of Andhra Pradesh Tourism Development Corporation, for instance, has been changed to Telangana Tourism Development Corporation by the protestors. Andhra Bank has been renamed Telangana Bank and Andhra Pradesh State Road Transport Corporation has become Telangana State Road Transport Corporation.

Andhra meals, a typical Telugu cuisine, is popular across the state but the word Andhra is no longer acceptable at least in some pockets of Telangana. After a few attacks by pro-Telangana activists, Andhra hotels changed their names to Telangana hotels.

"One has to look at this in the context of the Telangana movement. It is not like any other movement for a separate state in the country. It is a 50-year-old struggle. No other movement has such emotions and passions," P.L. Visweswara Rao, chairman of Telangana Intellectual Forum told IANS.

While businesses owned by people in Telangana are resorting to name-change to show their support to the cause, those run by people from Andhra region are doing it to escape the fury of pro-Telangana groups.

With some groups even threatening attacks on businesses owned by people from Andhra region, factories in Patacheru industrial area in Medak district, recently displayed boards declaring that they are not against the demand for a Telangana state.

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