Formation of Andhra Pradesh

Akhilandhra

Idea of formation of the State of Andhra Pradesh by integrating Telugu speaking areas on linguistic principles in South India is more than 100 year old. In 1911 itself Gentlemen like Jonnavittula Gurunatham and Unnava Lakshmiranayana have drafted a map showing locations inhabited by Telugu people in South India and called the land as ‘Akhilandra’.

However, the idea was shelved because of the fact that some areas inhabited by Andhra people were in Nizams State are outside the political setting of the then Government of India under the British. 

In those days Madras consisted of Telugu speaking areas ( present day Rayalaseema, Chittore and Nellore, and Saskar districts of Coastal Andhra ) and Kannada, Malayaalee, and Maratha areas. Some Kingdoms like Mysore, Cochin, etc., are outside the pale of Madras State. Nizam’s State is such another Kingdom. 

A brief Historical sketch of Saga of Telugus or Andhras for a separate State within India is placed here under:

( Andhra State was formed on October First of 1953 and Andhra Pradesh State was formed on November 1956 ).

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Jonnavittula Gurunatham and Unnava Lakshmiranayana

As early as 1911 Sri Jonnavittula Gurunatham and Sri Unnava Lakshmiranayana have drafted a map showing locations inhabited by Telugu people in South India.This vision for separate linguistic State must have cropped up in the minds of these Gentlemen may be after witnessing formation of National States of Germany and Italy in Europe on linguistic lines under the aegis of Garibaaldi and Mussolini respectively.

   Success of Vande mataram agitation against partition of Bengal might have emboldened and inspired Andhras to claim for a separate State hood in South India. It may be recalled that Bengal was divided in 1905 on communal lines and then in 1911 the division was cancelled.

Andhras of Madras Presidency / State:

In 1912, May leaders from Krishna and Godavari districts have held a conference.

In that conference a proposal was put forward for a separate State for Andhras from out of Madras State. The proposal was set aside by the dignitaries saying that that was a bigger subject so a district committee cannot take up such a larger issue in its agenda.

Accordingly , on 6th May of 1913 a meeting called ‘Andhra Mahasabha’ was held at Bapatla town of Guntur district. Sri Konda Venkatappayya presided over the meeting there. Proposal of pushing the demand for separate State for Andhras was entrusted to a select committee. 

​And on 11th of April, 1914, second meeting of Andhra Mahasabha was held ast Vijayawada. Decision to initiate necessary steps to demand Statehood for Andhras was taken up here in this meeting. Kandukuri Veeresalingam, Tirupati Venkata kavulu, Puranapanda Venkata Subbayya, Nyapati Subbarao, etc. have attended this meeting.

Between 1911 – 1914 Pattabhi seetarammaih has published an assay called Andhra Raashtram and K Venkatappayya has written ‘ Andhrodyamam’.

In 1914 publication of Andhra Patrika has shifted from Bombay to Madras. In 1921 Tamguturi Prakasam started ‘Swarajya Patrika’ published in English.

Third conference of Andhra Mahasabha was held in Visakhapatnam in the month of May 1915 and was resolved to demand for Andhra State by separating Telugu speaking 11districts from Madras State.  Panuganti Raja and Venkatapatiraju have taken lead roles in this meeing.

Fourth conference was held in Kakinada in 1916 under the Presidentship of Matnuri Krishnarao and resolved to push the issue of dividing the Country – India into linguistic States.

Fifth conference was held in Nellore on 1st Jun, 1917. Here Pillai from Gutti, Anantapur and Ekambar Ayyar form Nandyal, Karnool have opposed resolution on demand for Andhra State. However, President of the meeting Hari Sarvottamarao who hails from Karnool has facilitated passing of the resolution in favour of the demand for Andhra State by conducting voting based on one vote for one district.

And in December of 1917 a representation was placed before Mantague Chelmsford who is on the job of suggesting Politcal reforms under the aegis of Nyapati Subbarao.

In the All India Congress meeting held in Calcutta in 1917 demand for separate Cogress committee was accepted and accordingly Andhra  Congress committee was fromed in 1918.

In Feb, 1918 B N Sarma has placed a proposal for Linguistic States in the Imperial Legislative Council. However the motion was defeated by M A Jinna and Srinivasa Sastry.

In 1920 Congress has accepted formation of Linguistic States in its conference in Nagapur in principle.

In 1927 a resolution for separate State hood for Andhras was introduced ny One Mr. Pillalamarri Anjaneyulu and was passed in the Assembly of Madras State. The resolution was sent to Center but of no avail. 

Nehru report, which was a precursor of 1935 Government of India Act ., accepted the idea of formation of Linguistic States in principle. 

It must be remembered that States like Sindh and Orissa were formed on Linguistic basis as recommended by Simon commission. Andhras did not represent any thing to Simon because they gave priority to Congress call for boycott of Simon Commission and instead participated in Simon Go Back compaign. In 1932 a representation demanding Separate for Andhras was submitted to Secretary of State in London by Bobbili Raja, Mocharla Ramachandra rao, AP Patro, VV Jogayya and VV Giri. 

Similarly, on 27th june of 1935 Narasimharao, Subbarao and Sambamurty have submitted representations in London.

In 1937 Elections congress has won and Government was formed under the Chief Ministership of Rajagopalachari. Bezawada Gopalareddy, Prakasam and VV Giri have joined the Government as Ministers. 

Sribagh agreement

An agreement was reached upon by and between representatives from Rayalaseema and Coastal people of Andhra districts of Madras State on 16.11.1932 to ensure equitable share of resources and power in case of formation of Andhra State. This is called Sribagh agreement. 

On 21.4.1938 a resolution was passed in Madras assembly and sent to divide the State on linguistic lines and sent to Delhi but was rejected.

Tanguturi Prakasam was elected as Chief Minister of Madras State in 1946.

One day before declaration of Independence J Nehru stated that name  Andhra State would appear  in the New Constitution. 

Dhar Committe on Linguistic State

In 1948 Dhar committee entrusted with the job of recommending linguistic states has rejected the proposal as un viable. Later a committee of J Nehru, Patel and Seetaramaih has rejected the proposal of Andhra State on the ground that Rayalaseema people would not accept losing Madras city.

After driving out of the British India was preparing to have its own Government from Delhi. At this juncture one Gentleman called Swamy Seetaram started fasting unto death – Satyagraah  in August 1951, for the attainment of Andhra State. Acharya Vinobha Bhave came down and persuaded Swamy Seetaram to call off his fasting assuring him of positive decision soon. Nehru called this incident as ‘Extra constitutional means to achieve Andhra State’.

In the first general elections of free Indian Republic held in 1952 Congress won in the State of Madras. Even though Tamguturi Prakasam had numbers for forming Government Nehru made Rajagopalachari the CM of Madras. Then Rajagopalachari tried to start a Krishna Pennar project to take water to Madras city. Then large scale protests have occurred against the decision of Rajagopalachari.

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Potti Sriramulu

At this juncture Amarajeevi Sri Potti Sriramulu started a fast unto death on 19th of October in 1952 demanding Separate Statehood for Andhras. Nehru brushed aside calling the demand as Imperialism of Andhras . Rajagopalachari ridiculed it as hoax.

Unfortunately on 53rd day of fasting Sri Potti Sriramulu left this world. Already agitated over Krishna Pernnar project Andrha people broke into severe protests. Ultimately Nehru conceded to the Demand and State of Andhra was formed on October first of 1953. 

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Karnool was made first and interim Capital of Andhra State. Government was formed by T Prakasam as Chief Minister. It may be recalled that when Prakasam was asked whether Karnool would be continued as Capitol for ever Sri Prakasam replied that Andhra Capitol would be soon shifted to another place hinting indirectly to Hyderabad.

Andhras in Nizam State

Originally Nizam’s domain was called Deccan Subah. He, Nizam ul mulk, obtained this by was of a Firman from Moghul Emperor in 1724 in post Aurangzeb Era.

His first capital was Aurangabad. Late it was shifted to Hyderabad. His domain was divided into four Subahs, these are Warangal,  Medak, Aurangabad and Gulbarga. Government is conducted from Hyderabad and districts were under the control of Doras called differently in different regions – Sardars, Jagirdars, Moghasadars, Pattedars , etc.,

Ruling elite consisted of not only Muslims of Hyderabad but people from different parts of  India. Officials were used to be recruited from faraway places like Bengal and Hindustan. Khayasts, Bengal Brahmanas, Deshmukhs, Marathas, Kannadigas,etc., used to form the ruling elite in Nizam’s regime.

Nizam was made to issue order of Mulki in 1919 to make way for Telugu people in the Government Jobs.  So Mulki was promulgated against employment of non Telugus in the service of Nizam to pave way for employment for Telugus. 

Nizam rule ceased in 1948 and Hyderabad State was made part of Indian union. 

Unfortunately this principle of Mulki was applied after merger of States of Andhra and Hyderabad States against erstwhile Andhra State people. Courts’ decisions for and against this law resulted in Jai Telangana and Jai Andhra Movements in the State of AP in 1969 and 1972 respectively. 

Application of this kind of Mulki rules are in force in Kashmir only. It may be noted that Kashmir has its own Constitution and Indian Parliament cannot make law concerning to the State of Kashmir.

Irony is that Mulki law should have been claimed by fromer ruling elite in Hyderabad but this Mulki law is hijacked by Telangana districts people and hence all this fuss. 

In 1973 Constitution of India was amended to insert Article 371D to resolve the dispute and it was ordained that all kinds of regional reservations must end in the State by 1980 to accelerate integration of peoples of the two regions into one and not to perpetuate the psychological division of peoples forever.

It is history that political games predominated decisions of New Delhi all along rather than will of the People after Indira and Nehru. 

Coming to our point of state of Telugu people in Nizam’s State. It is interesting to note that Telugu people in the erstwhile Hyderabad State were living just like more or less slaves. Their freedom was restricted and forced to learn Urdu because Urdu was State language and all business of the State was conducted in Urdu. So any educated Telugu man there could not read or write in Telugu but Urdu. ( Perhaps, this was the main reason why Telangana people could not fill up their own quota in public employment and eventually had to be filled up by aspiring candidates mostly from Coastal Andhras. )

That is why progressive people from Nizam’s Andhra population’s first step was to educate people in Telugu language and to teach them about Telugu history and literature in Telugu. As a first step several  Libraries were established across the State of Nizam and Hyderabad city.

One such library was established in 1901 itself under the leadership of Komarraju Lakshmanarao with the active support from Munagala Zamindar Nayani Venkata Rangarao and Hyderabad Munsabdar Ravichettu Rangarao. And in 1906 K L Rao established Vijnana chandrika Mandali.

On November 1921 Andhra Jana Sangham was started in Hyderabad by Madapati Hanumantarao, Mandumula Narsimgarao, Burgula Ramakrishnarao and Adiraju Veerabhadrarao.

And in February 1922 name of Andhra Jana Sangh was changed to Nizam Samsthana Andhra Jana Sangham.

It must be noted that Telugu people of Nizam areas called themselves as Andhras by naming their association as Andhra Jana Sangham.

Afterwards this Andhra Jana Sangham was renamed as Nizam Andhra Sabha. ( In due course of time members of this organization joined Indian National Congress and Andhra Sabha was taken over by Communists ).

Nizam could not tolerate democratic associations in his domain and hence placed so many restrictions on them hence most of the time meetings were to be conducted in other States.

People fought against Nizam on several fronts. People sometimes with active support of Communists had to fight Rajakars, Jagirdars and Soldiers of Nizam and ultimately Indian Union forces forced Nizam to abandon his throne and sign on Instrument of Accession in 1948 to join Indian Union.

 Communists won 42 seats out of 105 in Telugu speaking areas of Hyderabad State in general election in 1952. However , Congress formed Government because of seats it got in Kannada and Maratha regions.

Similarly one third seats were won by Communists in Costal Andhra and Rayalaseema districts of Madras State. It is interesting to note that Communists offered support for Prakasam to form Government of Madras. However, Nehru made Rajagopalachari to form Government there. 

Nehru was annoyed by election results by Communists in Red districts of Coastal region and in Telugu speaking areas of Nizam State. 

Formation of Andhra Pradesh:

AP State was officially born on First of November 1956. As was told already idea of greater Andhra by merging Telugu speaking regions of Madras and Hyderabad States was there since 1911 in the minds of Andhra people.  One Mr. Konda Venkatappayya drafted a map showing all Telugu speaking districts lying in Madras and Hyderabad States in 1911.

Vishalandhra

Once again this idea of ‘Akhilandra ‘ appeared in 1945 with a different name. It was Visalandra. Visalandra meetings were held one at Vijayawada and another at Warangal in 1949 and 1950 respectively. Warangal meeting was attended by Prakasam, Kodata Ramalingam, Hayagrivachari, and Satyamurty, etc., Vijayawada meeting was conducted by Ayyadevara Kaleswararao.

In the meeting of Hyderabad State Congress Mahasabha of 1950 a resolution was passed for merger of Telugu speaking areas of Hyderabad State with that of Andhra State on Linguistic principles.

And when A Kaleswararao reminded Nehru of formation of States on linguistic principles at Congress meeting at Bangalore in 1951 Nehru warned him not to bring in unnecessary issued to the fore.

At first Konda venkata reddy supported Visalandra and he changed his cant in 1954 to separate Telangana.

Whereas Burgula Ramakrishnarao supported the idea of Separate Telangana and in 1956 he made way for Andhra Pradesh.

Acharya Ranga, Avula Gopalakrishna murty, Nadimpalli Narasimharao Duruvuri Virayya etc., from Andhra State did not support merger of the Two States to form Andhra Pradesh.

In the run up to the merger of the two regions so much fuss was made. Fazal Ali commission was installed in the name of States Reorganization Commission . Fazal Ali did whatever harm he could do to Telugu people. 

Today’s imbroglio with the State of AP has its origin in both Sribagh agreement and Fazal Ali’s report. 

Perplexing situation is that People of A State which guided the destination of Indian Union by pioneering the concept of Linguistic States is pursued by the Center for break up to gain two dozen MP seats in the coming general elections. 

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