join the 'mainstream'?

maya mirchandani, of ndtv, was born in 'Niloufer Hospital in Lakdi ka Pul, bed fee Rs 2/', around forty years ago. very thought-provoking :
Why am I wasting precious time saying all this? Because here lies the root of my total confusion over what should happen to Hyderabad, the city of my birth. Like me, Hyderabad too has multiple identities, cultural, religious, linguistic and ethnic. And for much of its 420-year-old history, it's an idea that has been coveted and fought over by each one of its communities. While its more recent, post independence history is chequered with communal riots, and pro-Telangana protests, its early history is inextricably tied to the Qutb Shahi dynasty. Until some years ago, driving to Gachi Bowli from Mehdipatnam on the old Bangalore road, you could still see their tombs rise above the landscape. They are now being restored with funds from Iran- the spiritual and cultural fount for the city's Shia Muslims, many of whom are more or less confined to the old city, divided from the new by the natural boundary of the Musi River. A friend once said to me Hyderabad's communal cartography is evident, the lines between Hindu and Muslim neighbourhoods absolute dividers, sometimes even referred to as "sarhad" or border. The same friend, a Hyderabadi Shia, a Left leaning management professor and itinerant poet, asked me last week what the creation of the state of Telangana would do to his identity.

The Hindus in Hyderabad are an equally motley lot. Conservative, Andhras who dominate the political landscape, and much of the big industry - Film, Pharmaceuticals, Real Estate, for example. And not to forget the Marwaris- who came in to trade in gems and jewels for the Nizams, and like the Sindhis have an entrepreneurial spirit that allows them to call anyplace home. Culturally completely different from each other, and I am not even going to get into the caste and class break ups within the different communities.

Add to this mix now, a third, even newer Hyderabad. HITEC city. Chandrababu Naidu's dream, of making it the Dubai of South India, this part of the city, spreading outwards even beyond Jubilee Hills (once the far end of town), has over the last decade become the city's showcase, with several visiting foreign dignitaries ensuring they make a pit stop at one of the symbols of India's emerging economy.

But this has only complicated Hyderabad's identity further. The massive influx of dollars during the IT, BPO boom has brought in a new transitory white collar population of foreigners, ex-pats, westernized outsiders with their swank cars, boutiques and fancy mansions right beside the old Irani hotels and crumbling bungalows of my grandparents era. They too are now an integral, inextricable part of Hyderabad's social fabric.

As the center's decision to create a new state of Telangana now focuses on the future of Hyderabad, since the city comes bang in the middle of its districts, the debate ranges from identity to economics. Hyderabad is Telangana's cash cow. The creation of a new state will ensure the wealth it generates is distributed among what are today Andhra Pradesh's poorest districts. But Hyderabad is also organically linked with the rest of Andhra Pradesh, as Andhras from Coastal Districts (like my mother's family) and Rayalseema made the inland capital their home generations ago. Are they now being told they don't belong?

Similarly, for the non-Telugu communities of Hyderabad- are they now being told they don't belong either?
one of the vilest remarks i've read recently, at one of the many separatist sites, was that muslims of hyderabad have stayed 'aloof' from the 'mainstream' (with the obvious hint that that's probably the reason why they aren't supporting separation). what is the 'mainstream'? another post from the google group which is 'tracking telangana' would give you an idea about what or who the 'mainstream' is:
Last Thursday (5th March), when Kaneez and I took an auto to go to Moghalpura near Charminar from Anveshi office, I got my first ‘class’ on Telangana from an auto-driver. In his late 20s he spoke in chaste Dakhani.

‘Madam, do you think Telangana will be given?’, he started the conversation.

‘We don’t know. What do you think?’, we asked him in turn.
chaste dakhani? there used to be a time when upper caste hindus would speak only chaste urdu with the lower classes, and also sometimes with their own womenfolk, knowing fully well that they couldn't respond in the same language, just to show them their place. dakhani, or 'unchaste' urdu if you like, evolved out of the collaborative efforts of the lower classes, hindu and muslim, to live upto their masters' standards of purity. but their masters only saw it as another illustration of their impurity. is dakhani mainstream now? you might find an answer at the end of the interrupted conversation:
“What do you think of MIM’s stand on Telangana?” (both of us assuming he is a Muslim, as he was speaking pure Dakhani, wearing surma and referred to Hindus as Telugus)

“They say, if we support Telangana, what will happen to Muslims in Andhra area? They should learn the problems of the people, talk to them, and then take a stand. Why do they go on taking the same old stand? May be they will say - give us the city and go!”

“But that will mean that they will lose power, isn’t it? If the city becomes Union territory, they won’t get anything!”

“I don’t know why they are taking that stand, madam. Probably they also don’t speak to the people, like all political parties..I talked too much. I never spoke to any passenger like this”.

Before getting off, we couldn’t resist asking his name. “Rajesh” he replied shyly.
who's 'mainstream'? the people 'tracking telangana', or the poor muslim driver who turned into an obviously 'impure' hindu? people of the second kind seem to be in a majority, broken up into many minorities like maya mirchandani. but they should join the 'mainstream', if they wish to be paid, i guess. such a foul term.


Anonymous said...

I dont understand Maya's or your logic.

Creation of telangana with hyderabad as its capital does not mean that people are not wanted here. How can hyderabad's social fabric change when it becomes capital of telangana or if it becomes union territory of combined capital.

All the commentators forget, the majority or people i hyd are telangana people, leaving out muslims. Cant the voice of these people be heard. Infact the majority f muslims, gujju's, marwari's are in favour of telangana.

kuffir said...


are you one person or a few lakh people?

rajkumar said...

If Telangana with hyd was created would you allow Andhraites to work there?Would Telangana part with 20000 acres in a border area to create a capital and fund it with cess on Telangana properties and people. If yes I'll definitely express my solidarity with you and your brethren.

Karthik said...


I am fully agree that there should be cess on hyderabad for a period of say 10 years and the revenue from hyderabad should be shared between two states till a new capital develops. But i dont agree giving land in telangana area. The new capital should be developed in seemandhra area.

This for me looks a logical solution for the current crisis. This issue should be settled once for all.

Anonymous said...

"If Telangana with hyd was created would you allow Andhraites to work there?"

If its a question, The answer is a resounding YES. ( and by the way who are we to ALLOW you to stay here. You are an indian and its your right) This is India and any india can stay whereever he wants. thats his fundamental right. When many telanganites and andhrites can work in other states what difference will the situation be in new telangana state.

Actually, the problem is not we (telangana people) allowing you to stay. the crux of the problem is that feeling in andhra people that they will not be allowed to stay in hyd is absolutely wrong. If ask you and all fellow andhra bretheren to get out of this feeling.

Anonymous said...


I am the voice of a few lakh people in hyderabad.

My sincere request to you is to
'understand the the aspiration of people in telangana. Why have they such feeling.

kuffir said...


thought so. why do you need my approval then? i can only speak for myself because i don't have these issues.

Anonymous said...


I said, I am the voice of a lakhs of people and i never said i am lakhs of people. You dont seem to understand the difference between the two.

I agree for one thing..it's your blog and you can write as much shit as you can. You dont seem to have respect for people who comment and read your blog, but you think you can criticize others who are doing the same.

rajkumar said...

//If its a question, The answer is a resounding YES. ( and by the way who are we to ALLOW you to stay here. You are an indian and its your right) This is India and any india can stay whereever he wants. thats his fundamental right. When many telanganites and andhrites can work in other states what difference will the situation be in new telangana state. //
If that is the case how will Telangana usher in a golden era> I fail to understand why students and youth are committing suicides? Why is that everybody says there will be jobs only for Telangana?
If that is the case Telangana is not required.Think about it.If andhra businesses still flourish in Telangana and assuming because of their 'dislike'( acc to Telangana protogonist which I disagree anyway) to Telanganites still continues.Where will Telangana youth get their jobs? IF you say Telangana then obviously you are implying Andhras go back to Andhra.
The constitution has given me so many rights but tell me,if I can make use of my rights in Telangana region of my state right now.Can I say I oppose Telangana without being heckled down or my voice stifled? Is there security if I openly pursue,the constitution allows me to have my own opinion but you and your friends appreciate it ?
Regarding parting the land,look at what Nizams did,whenever they owed money or wanted money they sold off the territories. I don't want my country or my 'new state' to run pillar to post to create and spend my hard earned money for a capital whose very existence could have been avoided.

ved said...


Good questions. Get ready. This is where the T vaadis will launch 'atma gouravam' weapon. Andhrites can do everything but telangana people (I don't how you define them. JV rao is settler but KCR is Telanganite. You figure it out) will have self rule (as if they have military rule right now).

In other words protect the poor innocent telangana politicians who are getting only half opportunities to plunder telangana & hyderabad.

In separate T, the average telanganite should be very happy with assurance that he will be robbed only by a honest telengana politician, not the evil andhra politician. That should make every telanganite very proud.

blueshift said...


"I am the voice of a few lakh people in hyderabad."

there are few more lakhs of people who disagree with you and your few lakh(if they really exist)people?

Do you have any respect for them?

I agree with 1 thing .....like you. Hyderabad is in the center of Telangana. So this tamasha for it.

Kiran said...


are you one person or a few lakh people?"

He he ..in less complicated societies this may be seen as multiple personality disorder

kuffir said...



rajkumar said...

Tracking Telangana...Intellectual buffoons like Ganta Chakrapani and K Srinivas instead of eulogizing the suicides should come up with realism in their practices.
Both of them are eminent journalists but their articles or speeches defy any logic.What rational do they follow when they say youth are dying in Telangana because they don't have any job or anything to do.Joblessness is common in whichever side of fence you are.They say that because the students are dying Telangana should be formed right now period and they don't wish to listen to anybody who asks them to put some logic in their thinking.
Ganta Chakrapani being a professor in sociology fails to understand the difference between a movement and an emotion.I saw him say in one of the discussion that Telangana wants to separate based on Self-rule,self-respect and disrespect.
He says that Telangana announcement was done because the Center was scared of students and Chalo Assembly.The students ,he says are committing suicides because they were dubbed as radicals ..what a joke

rajkumar said...

Devil's workshop in progress..

rajkumar said...


rajkumar said...

This is the master piece.... Eulogizing Niam and saying that Hyderabad should not have been liberated.Liberation of Hyderabad is the worst thing that happened.Hey Nizams are North Indian.Let Telanganites remember that...

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