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Telangana on schedule

Hyderabad, March 19: Telangana, the 29th state of the country, will be born on schedule on the midnight of June 1 and no extension will be granted, Union home secretary Anil Goswami has told officials in Andhra Pradesh.

The Andhra treasury will have to be split by then to create a consolidated fund for each of the two states, he said.

Goswami had arrived in Hyderabad yesterday on a two-day visit to monitor the bifurcation amid reports that some officials were not cooperating, and that this had slowed down the process and created a weeklong backlog.

He directed that all other work be kept aside and additional staff be recruited, if necessary, to ensure strict compliance of the deadline. The appointed date for the creation of Telangana is June 2.

The Union home secretary told the chief secretary and other officials that no requests for extension of deadline would be accepted.

Goswami held last the rounds of review with chief secretary P.K. Mohanty before leaving for Delhi this evening.

The home secretary examined the progress of the apex committee, set up after the bifurcation bill was passed in Parliament in February, as well as the sub-committees on file transfers, assets, buildings, land, boundaries, treasury and employees.

He told state officials not to worry about educational institutions and public sector units, which could be divided even after the bifurcation.

Goswami asked the officials to follow the precedents of Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand and Uttarakhand, created in 2000.

The home secretary’s assistants, Rajeev Sharma and Suresh Kumar, who had accompanied him on the two-day visit, reviewed the progress of all 15 sub-committees and whether they were following the model code of conduct for elections. Each was assisted by a team of three Andhra officials.

The Centre has also set up a panel headed by former vigilance commissioner Pratyush Sinha to supervise the division of all India service cadres between Telangana and the residuary state of Andhra.

Goswami said the Sinha committee would function in consultation with C.R. Kamalanathan, a former IAS officer who is heading the apex committee for bifurcation.

Kamalanathan, who has set up his office in the secretariat’s B block, is supervising the work done by the 15 sub-committees on a daily basis.

Goswami held a marathon meeting with Kamalanathan today and said the Sinha panel would take up the issue of the division of the officers — IFS, IAS and IPS — between the two states.

Sinha, a 1969 batch official, had played a crucial role in the division of Bihar and creation of Jharkhand in 2000.

Goswami also held a long meeting with IPS officers and senior officials of the state home ministry to discuss deployment of police forces in both the states. The exercise will be taken up after the general election, the chief secretary’s office said.