Refuting allegations that he was tacitly toeing the Congress high command's line on the state bifurcation issue, Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Kiran Kumar Reddy on Thursday asserted he would continue his fight till the division process was stopped.
"I am committed to what I said earlier...that I will try to stop the (bifurcation) cyclone. I am a warrior and will continue the fight till the end," he told reporters during an informal chat in the Assembly premises this afternoon.
Reddy's assertion comes even as the Assembly gets ready to debate the draft AP Reorganisation Bill, 2013 that provides for creation of a new state of Telangana. Frequent adjournments and pandemonium are holding up the debate.
"I did not attend the House on Monday (when the draft Bill was tabled) only because I was unwell," he said, refuting allegations from various quarters that he deliberately skipped the session despite vowing to stall the legislation.
Using cricketing analogy, the Chief Minister, who once played for Hyderabad in the Ranji Trophy, said the "last ball" over the bifurcation was not bowled yet.
"It is for the AP Legislative Council and Assembly to decide whether the state should remain united or be separated. The Centre should go ahead with the division process only as per the Constitution.
"In the bifurcation of Bihar, Madhya Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh, the (respective) Assemblies passed resolutions based on which the Centre carried out the division," he pointed out.
The Chief Minister said a debate is yet to start in the Assembly over the Bill sent by the Centre. "Only the Bill has been tabled in the House...debate has not started." Members on both sides (Telangana and Seemandhra) should express their views on the draft Bill keeping in mind sentiments of the people of the respective regions, he said.
On the objections raised by Seemandhra legislators on the "lacunae" in the Bill, Reddy said the State Government would write a letter to the Centre seeking information on certain aspects of the proposed legislation.