GoM on Telangana meets for first time

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SummaryThe Group of Ministers (GoM) on Telangana met for the first time today with an assurance...

The Group of Ministers (GoM) on Telangana met for the first time today with an assurance that the concerns of Andhra Pradesh would be addressed with "fairness and objectivity".

Elaborate discussions on the issue will now be held on October 19 as two Union ministers -- A K Antony and P Chidambaram -- could not attend the meet, with the Defence Minister indisposed and the Finance Minister out of the country.

After the meeting, which was chaired by Union Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde, Health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad said the GoM discussed "basic parameters for creation of a separate state".

He said there is no time-frame for the GoM to submit its report.

Minister of Petroleum and Natural Gas, M Veerappa Moily and Rural Development Minister Jairam Ramesh are the other ministers on the GoM, while Minister of State for Personnel and Prime Minister's Office, V Narayanasamy, is a special invitee on the panel.

A press statement issued after the meeting said the GoM "would like to assure the people of Andhra Pradesh that their concerns would be addressed with fairness and objectivity".

The statement said the GoM also discussed "the approach and methodology to be adopted by it" and that the GoM "would take opinion of stakeholders on all important subjects while formulating its recommendations".

The GoM finalised different nodal ministries and departments of the central government which will prepare status reports to be submitted to the GoM on subjects in the terms of reference, the statement said.

"Information in this regard will be sought from the state government and the process will start immediately," it said.

The terms of reference for the Telangana GoM include determining the boundaries of the new state of Telangana and the residuary state of Andhra Pradesh with reference to the electoral constituencies, judicial and statutory bodies and other administrative units.

The Telangana GoM would also look into the legal and administrative measures required to ensure that both the state governments can function efficiently from Hyderabad as the common capital for 10 years, besides taking into account the legal, financial and administrative measures that may be required for transition to a new capital of the residuary state of Andhra Pradesh.

It would also discuss the special needs of the backward regions and districts of both the states and recommend measures.

Issues relating to law and order, safety and security of all residents and ensuring

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