Professor Kodandaram, the chairman of Telangana Joint Action Committee (TJAC), has sounded the war bugle against the ruling TRS government. 

 

Kodandaram recently said that Telangana should evolve into a people’s state, where livelihood rights of the people should take primacy over corporate and real estate interests. A statement like this from one of the founding fathers of Telangana has sent ripples through the TRS government.

 

Even such a severe indictment of the K Chandrasekhar Rao's government would have gone unreported. But since it was Kodandaram, a former political science teacher of Osmania University, who made the remark, it has made headlines. 

Over the past two years, no opposition party has had the guts to state the obvious - CM KCR is pursuing the same development model of the 'Andhra rulers', whom they had claimed intensely to hate.

 

Since his remark, all hell has broken loose in Telangana. All the cabinet ministers, half a dozen MPs, scores of party MLAs and other leaders have launched a counter war against Kodandaram, who led the Telangana movement since 2009 till the Parliament passed the Bifurcation Bill in 2014. In all of that time, he remained the face of the Telangana movement while KCR stood in the background.

 

Though Kodandaram has no role in the government’s agenda to create a Bangaru Telangana (Golden Telangana) after the formation of the state, it is difficult to imagine the recent phase of T-movement without referring to Kodandaram. 

 

While KCR gave articulation to the separate state of Telangana, the idea for Telangana was crafted by half-a-dozen intellectuals, of which Kodandaram was one. His clarity, commitment and persuasive skills forced KCR to set up the Telangana Joint Action Committee to take the movement to every heart in Telangana and to ensure that all political parties joined it. The formation of TJAC in 2009 and Kodand’s leadership electrified the movement. For some time it had grown larger than KCR himself, which is said to be the reason for the rift between two leaders. 

 

After the formation of Telangana, KCR wanted no opposition in the state, claiming he himself was doing all that was needed for the sake of the people. hile Kodandaram chose to tour every village and found something was amiss in the KCR governance. He worked with farmers, weavers and studied development model only to find out that the government was pursuing a model which is fatal to the people of the state who fought for Telangana.

 

What worried TRS more is the fact that Kodandaram is not a conventional political leader. His comments can’t be rubbished as opposition’s political rhetoric. He has vast following in state and outside. At the time of writing this report, Kodandaram was invited as the chief guest at several Telangana festivals in Australia.

 

Read more: Towns in Telangana call bandhs to demand their own districts

 

He also has invitations pending to US and UK. He is expected to carry his impressions of the two-year long governance of chief minister Rao to every Telangana man across the world.

 

According to his aides in Hyderabad, Kodandaram is planning to release his manifesto for the reconstruction of Telangana state "soon.” Two days back he listed out the omissions and commissions of TRS government briefly. VCs are not appointed to the universities, teachers were not recruited. Drought relief haphazard, Land acquisition is not done as per the Act. He is planning to organise seminars to take the views on all issues from the public before lunching his mission. "He is planning one in Gajwel as well, the constituency of chief minister,” his aides added.

 

It appears, in the absence of credible political opposition in the state, the JTAC is all set to emerge as the people's opposition -- a rare political phenomenon in India. Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao has liquidated the political opposition by admitting the MLAs and MPs of TDP and Congress in the name of “reunification of Telangana forces”. 

 

YSRC merged with TRS. From the TDP camp, 12 MLAs and an MP left has joined TRS. Congress also has lost many MLAs and its one MP is a;sp planning to cross over to TRS.

According to his aides in Hyderabad, Kodandaram is planning to release his manifesto for the reconstruction of Telangana state "soon.” Two days back he listed out the omissions and commissions of TRS government briefly.

 

With TDP and Congress biting the dust in every election held in the past two years, and militant activists of the erstwhile 'free Telangana' movement being accommodated in the government, Telangana is in the process of becoming a zero-opposition state. 
 

Kodandaram, without any electoral agenda, appears to be filling this void left by opposition parties in the state. With its vast network in the state along with many constituent organisations such as Telangana Vidyavantula Vedika, revival of TJAC may prove a setback for KCR.

 

The professor is expected to intensify his activities after his return from Australia in a week.