Telangana state: All you wanted to know about India's 29th state

Written by PTI | Hyderabad | Updated: Feb 22 2014, 15:15pm hrs
TelanganaPro-Telangana Congress workers celebrate the passage of Telangana Bill by the Parliament, in Hyderabad on Friday. PTI
Land-locked Telangana, all set to become the country's 29th state soon, is spread over an area of over 1.14 lakh square kilometres, and boasts of considerable mineral wealth under its soil.

Telangana's population (including that of Hyderabad) is 3.5 crore.

The state, which would come into existence once the President gives assent to the Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Bill, passed by both Houses of Parliament this week, comprises the districts of Adilabad, Nizamabad, Karimnagar, Medak, Warangal, Rangareddy, Khammam, Nalgonda and Mahabubnagar, apart from the metropolis of Hyderabad.

It would border on Maharashtra, Karnataka and the residuary state of Andhra Pradesh (Seemandhra).

The region was once a part of the princely state of Hyderabad, ruled by the Nizams, which also included some parts of the present-day Maharashtra and Karnataka.

"Hyderabad, during Nizam's rule, was the only state where the language of administration was neither English, nor that of the locals people. The language of the courts, the administration and instruction in educational institutions was primarily Urdu," notes the Srikrishna Committee report.

Telugu and Urdu are the main languages in the region, though Marathi and Kannada are also spoken in some areas.

Telangana boasts of mineral wealth in the form of coal and iron ore. State-run Singareni Collieries, a joint venture of Central Government and Andhra Pradesh government, is a major employer in the region.

But the new state is expected to fall short of power due to uncertainties on account of hydel power generation.

Godavari with its tributaries, and Krishna are the two major rivers. The region has numerous lakes too.

It was once a hotbed of Naxal activity, and a substantial number of the top leaders of CPI (Maoists) are known to hail from the region.

The region has 17 Lok Sabha seats and 119 Assembly seats in the undivided Andhra Pradesh. There has been a demand to increase the number of Assembly seats to 153.

The Telangana statehood issue hogged limelight in the last several years, though the demand for statehood is about 60 years old.

Intense agitations and unprecedented events like en masse resignations of legislators, reported suicides of hundreds of youths and high drama inside legislatures, both for and against the separate state, were witnessed, as the Central government eventually bit the bullet and decided to carve out the new state.