the business of telangana

kancha ilaiah offers some advice to 'hyderabad capitalists':
“We will not allow your business in Hyderabad”, they say. “We will not allow your cinema industry to run; we will not allow even your cricket match to take place”.

You have pacified them by bribing them. Of course, you have also aided and abetted a united Andhra movement alongside.

What worries me most is the way the leaders growing around such movements have become richer day by day.

Thanks to this, your economic activity has been going on without hurdles. After each such threat, it is the threat giver’s wealth and health that is increasing. But the general health of Telangana — the economic health of its aam aadmi — has been deteriorating.

In the late 60s and early 70s the Telangana movement was conducted mostly on legs and bicycles. The bigger leaders of the movement were moving in jeeps, and even the biggest ones could only boast Ambassador cars.

Yet they conducted agitations that shook the Centre, inspired the youth to brave bullets and also won elections — 11 out of 14 parliamentary seats were in the pocket of Praja Samithi.

Of course, that movement also caused loss of lives and disrupted education. Lot of public property that Telangana people would have used for their advancement was damaged. The agitations also pushed the region backwards in the field of education. And no great moral leader or intellectual emerged from the movement. And most importantly, Telangana did not become a separate state.

But the fact remains that no leader made money out of that movement. Only Mr Chenna Reddy made political capital.

Now look at the present Telangana movement and its drivers. All you see is money, money and more money. Where is it coming from? Obviously much of it is coming from you. You see this movement as an inevitable evil and want to handle it as carefully as possible.

There is a saying that Capitalists like corrupt Communists. Not only can the corrupt Communist be bribed, his presence also gives a bigger moral licence to the capitalist to exploit workers more and more.
apart from politicians, too many other people from other classes seem to have developed an increasing interest in the telangana industry over the last several years. out of work film actors. directors. hardly working government babus and teachers. lawyers looking for prosecutors', magistrates' posts. thousands of aspiring legislators and corporators. you name them. if the road to telangana itself holds such huge business potential, think about the hold of the destination for them.

look at kcr himself. in the beginning, it was only kcr. and then a couple of his nephews joined the 'agitation'. one of them became an mla twice. somewhere along the way, he managed to lose his hawai chappals and managed to buy himself more trendy footwear and much else. and then kcr's son left his job in the information technology industry in the u.s., and decided the telangana business was much more lucrative. he was soon followed by his sister and brother-in-law. and numerous cousins and other relatives are also hanging around..what does all that illustrate?

and then there are more smart people waiting in the wings, like lots of successful telanganis working abroad. like a few in the telangana development forum for instance. it's difficult to say how many of them will be chosen as candidates by mainstream political parties in the next elections for the andhra pradesh or telangana assembly (it doesn't matter which, really) but many of them are saving money to buy tickets, i'm sure.


Kiran said...

Moral underpinnings of politics are important for a relatively stable and prosperous societies. In that regard almost all political parties in India without sectarian interests at heart(like BJP, TRS) have sound moral principles which they articulate publicly (and violate in private). Even BJP has very little agenda to attack any constitutional principles like TRS has.
What makes telangana movement an ugly exception is that it has no moral underpinnings - either in public or private.

kuffir said...


there are a lot of otherwise clearthinking activists of impeccable reputations also participating in the movement.. but yes, as far as the trs and other career politicians from other parties supporting the movement are concerned, i totally agree with you.. also, not surprisingly, a large number of lumpen elements, businessmen and careerists of various professions, motivated solely by private gains, are taking a very keen interest in the 'movement'.

Anonymous said...

Dr. Ilaiah has an excellent conceptual grip but his writings often look funny. For instance, he appears to have a fixation for cars. In an earlier piece, he wrote on why he did not buy a car even though he can afford one. He again displays his "auto knowledge" without knowing the Ambassador was the most desired car in 1969!
His naive assumption on the "honesty" of Chenna Reddy & cronies. True Reddy made no money in the immediate aftermath. But he revived his nearly dead career and changed the poltical landscape. By doing so, he & his cronies minted crores of rupees starting from 1978. He was merely postponing the loot but Dr. Ilaiah does not understand it.

kuffir said...


thanks for your comment..yes chenna reddy made a lot of money, post '78. the palatial home he built even when he was the chief minister sort of paved the way for top political leaders to indulge in more blatant corruption later..

Sundeep said...


Thanks for your illuminating posts. I am looking for some leads on reading material. Could you please send me email at pattem@gmail.com?

kuffir said...


thanks sundeep for the compliment. reading material? what kind?

Sundeep said...


I am trying to navigate Telugu literature. While there is no shortcut for a critical engagement, it would be nice to get a head start. There are the 'well accepted' and 'sanctioned' greats and lists one can use. A bit more difficult to find books/works that see both glory and degradation side by side, and not treat it as a contradiction. I found Velceru Narayana Rao's book on 20th century Telugu poetry to be a useful resource in this respect. I was able to follow up with reading some of the works in the original ('గబ్బిలం', 'నీలిమేఘాలు', couldn't find Kaloji's work). One wishes there was a similar entry point (for the native language impaired like me, among others) to prose writing - fiction, literary criticism, politics, culture, historical narratives ... everything.

Even with my limited exposure, I find your blog arresting. Not only are the issues important and insights novel, you just seem to be 'speaking a different language'. So I thought I'd ask you for recommendations, in Telugu or otherwise.

Jai said...

Sandeep, try kaloji.wordpress.com for Kaloji's work. The blogger may be able to provide other works. I think there is another blog run by Kaloji's grandson but I do not know the URL

gaddeswarup said...

Note from another Telugu impaired. There are some resources of digitized books that I posted here
and some more can be found by searching for telugu books in my blog and other places. The problem I have is that I find many books and even blogs hard to read. I know mostly spoken Telugu from coastal Andhra from 50 years ago. There were crainly some readble books and novels though I am not sure how useful they are as an entry to current A.P. Some I found readble are Achanta Janaki Ram (like Jarugutunna yatre, available digitally), Rallapalli Anantakrishna Sarma (Vemana..), Chalam, Gopichand, Rachakonda Viswanatha Sastry, Kodavatiganti Kutuma Rao, Narla Venkateswararao (particularly kottgatta, maata manti, picchapati). Sreedvi wrote a nice book called kaalateeta vyaktulu, and Palagummi Padmaraju, Ptukucchi Sambasivarao, Balivada kantarao are also readable. These are all fairly old though there are some timeless themes. Recently I found that one I understood better than most is a collection of poems of Madiga poetry which was uploaded by Katti Mahesh Kumar in his blog 'Parnasala'. I found that I can understand poets like Gorati Venkanna but classics like Manucharitra and Amuktamalyada do not do any thing for me. Some older poets like Annamacharya, Vemana seem understandable with a bit of effort about words whose meaning has changed. This is mainly a scattered list of things that I could understand at some stage or other but not really an entry point to understand the current society. I guess that if one persists, with so much stuff available digitally, one can slowly find what suits one.

Sundeep said...

Thanks, Jai, Swarup garu. I appreciate your help.

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