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Saturday 10 December 2011

Mayawati's proposal to divide Uttar Pradesh into four States goes far beyond disturbing the State's politics ahead of the elections.

Volume 28 - Issue 25 :: Dec. 03-16, 2011INDIA'S NATIONAL MAGAZINE
from the publishers of THE HINDU

Mayawati's proposal to divide Uttar Pradesh into four States goes far beyond disturbing the State's politics ahead of the elections.

“THE elephant has set a political cat among the pigeons.” Lucknow-based political analyst Sudhir Panwar thus succinctly summed up the immediate effect of Chief Minister Mayawati's announcement of the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) government's proposal to divide Uttar Pradesh into four smaller States. “Everybody knows that the processes for the formation of the proposed new States – Paschim Pradesh, Bundelkhand, Poorvanchal and Awadh Pradesh – cannot even be initiated properly before the State Assembly elections, which are due early next year. But, undoubtedly, this has added a new, if contentious, dimension to the election run-up as a whole and particularly to the early electioneering launched by the major players – the principal opposition Samajwadi Party [S.P.], the Bharatiya Janata Party [BJP], the Congress, and the Ajit Singh-led Rashtriya Lok Dal [RLD] – in State politics. How exactly this will ultimately impact the electoral trend cannot be gauged at this point. But there is no doubt that this too will come up time and again on the poll scene,” Panwar said.
Early reactions from political forces in Uttar Pradesh and other parts of the country as well as ground reactions in the State indicate that through the November 16 announcement the BSP Chief Minister has, in one stroke, delivered several political blows. To start with, the announcement has diverted, even if temporarily, attention away from her government's track record, which is far from creditworthy in terms of maintenance of law and order or in curbing political and administrative corruption. The announcement has also put three important political players – the Congress, the BJP and the RLD – on the defensive, at least in one aspect of the political campaign. None of the three parties can overtly oppose the announcement, on account of a variety of factors. The leaderships of the Congress and the BJP have characterised the move as a “political gimmick”. They find themselves incapable of discussing the merits or demerits of the proposal beyond that. The RLD's leaders have questioned the timing of the announcement.
The reasons for these feeble reactions are evident. The RLD has been for long demanding a separate Harit Pradesh, comprising the western districts of U.P. The contours of Paschim Pradesh correspond to the RLD's Harit Pradesh. The BJP is for smaller States in principle and has been supporting the movement for the creation of Telangana by bifurcating Andhra Pradesh. Sections of the Congress in at least three of the four proposed new States – Bundelkhand, Poorvanchal and Paschim Pradesh – have periodically articulated their support to the idea of dividing U.P. The Congress' national leadership, including Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, has repeatedly pointed to the possibility of a second States Reorganisation Commission (SRC) to consider the demands for smaller States on the basis of developmental concerns, ethnicity and regional aspirations.
Naturally, the leaderships of all the three parties have been vague in their reactions to Mayawati's proposal. Only the S.P. has made bold to oppose the move unequivocally, and this may fetch it political dividends in the form of support from those opposed to such division. “The reorganisation issue is an emotional one. One can find opinion both in favour of and against it, at the grass roots. Hence, the BSP and the S.P. are trying to gain by making their positions clear, whereas the Congress and the BJP are treading cautiously. Put simply, the announcement has further reduced the electoral contest to being one between the BSP and the S.P.,” Panwar said.
At the level of national politics too, the proposal is bound to cause great discomfort to the Congress and the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government led by it at the Centre. The government is already grappling with the Telangana agitation, which has not only generated turbulence from time to time but also led to dissensions within the party's Andhra Pradesh unit. The Congress has sought a number of “middle ground” options to deal with the situation without much success. The political climate created by Mayawati's announcement is bound to accentuate the emotive element in the Telangana movement. This will naturally add to the woes of the Congress governments in Andhra Pradesh and at the Centre.

Mayawati addressing a press conference in Lucknow on November 21.
There are also indications that Mayawati's proposal has acted as a spur to other long-standing demands for statehood. These include the demands for Vidarbha, Gorkhaland and Bodoland. The National Federation for New States (NFNS) has already regrouped in the context of the announcement. Niroop Reddy, convener of the NFNS, told Frontline that the organisation was planning to meet in Delhi in early December to concretise a new action plan for launching a broad agitation in different parts of the country. Interestingly, the NFNS has representatives of another demand for statehood from Uttar Pradesh, namely Brij Pradesh. The demand visualises the creation of Brij Pradesh comprising certain parts of western and central Uttar Pradesh. Niroop Reddy says that if Mayawati decides to support the demand for Telangana and Vidarbha, she will gain greater acceptance in the southern and western parts of India. “Vidarbha is Ambedkar's home State and Telangana has only 10 per cent upper caste population,” he says.
Indications from the higher echelons of the BSP are that the party is looking at suggestions such as these seriously in order to renew and strengthen its effort to gain greater prominence in national politics. “Through the proposal for four new States, Behenji has made it clear that the BSP is not a one-person party. By any standards, the BSP is a very powerful force in the regions of Poorvanchal and Bundelkhand, and if these attain statehood, we will have Chief Ministers from different sections of the organisational hierarchy. In many ways, the announcement also signifies a concrete move to decentralise the organisation as well as empower more party leaders. Undoubtedly, this is the path for greater national prominence,” a senior BSP Member of Parliament told Frontline on condition of anonymity, as is the wont among second-level leaders in the party.
A number of political analysts, including the academic Sudha Pai of Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), who has carried out fundamental research on the reorganisation of States, are of the view that the cumulative impact of all these developments will ultimately make the Centre consider the formation of a second SRC. “Such an entity could look at the multitude of issues and aspirations behind different demands and come up with concrete and objective parameters for reorganisation. There is no need to see this as promotion of fissiparous tendencies but has to be perceived as part of a continuing process of democratisation that will address the concerns of social groups and regions hitherto excluded from the mainstream of governance,” Sudha Pai said.
The views expressed by analysts like Sudha Pai do find reverberations in the Congress. A number of leaders admit that the Union government will be forced to grapple with the cumulative effect of the statehood demands. In fact, a number of them even advocate the setting up of a second SRC before the U.P. elections. This, said a senior Minister from south India, would help the party in two ways. “One, [it will] minimise the political damage caused by Mayawati's announcement as it will show that the Congress too is serious in pursuing the agenda, and two, give the party and the government some biding time on issues such as Telangana on account of the processes involved in the setting up of the second SRC and getting it into motion.” As things stand, all these ideas are at the debating stage only, although there is the realisation that “something needs to be done” at the earliest in order to put up a good show in U.P. and also to stave off the problems that are bound to emerge from other parts of the country.
As these confabulations continue at the level of the Union government, politics at the ground level is increasingly becoming a contest between the BSP and the S.P. The S.P. is going all out to highlight the corruption and criminalisation under the BSP government as the principal issue in its campaign though the record of its own previous governments is posing it some problems. Akhilesh Yadav, the party's State unit president and three-time Lok Sabha member, launched a “Kranti Rath” covering all parts of the State. An interesting dimension of the campaign was the promise to clean the S.P. of all criminal influences of the past. Ground-level reactions suggest that this, along with the anti-division campaign, is evoking positive mass response for the party. In terms of caste equations, the 2007 elections signified desertion by a section of the Other Backward Classes (OBC) votes from the party, including votes from its most prominent support base, the Yadav community. This was essentially on account of the negative sentiments against the Mulayam Singh Yadav-led S.P. government. Indications are that there is greater consolidation of Yadav votes behind the party now than in 2007, partly on account of the aggressive pursuit of Chamar interests by the Mayawati government. The Chief Minister belongs to the Chamar community.
The BSP, on its part, is trying hard to advance the Dalit-Brahmin Bhaichara (Dalit-Brahmin brotherhood) political equation it had promoted in 2007. However, the impression gathered by Frontline while travelling in parts of western, central and eastern districts of the State over the past month is that this combination will not be as effective as it was in 2007. The rampant corruption and criminalisation of politics have alienated significant chunks of the party's support base. However, its Chamar base is intact. The leadership is apparently hopeful that this, along with the addition of a section of Muslim and upper caste votes, will help the BSP emerge once again as the single-largest party. The BSP also hopes to get some support from the groups that have campaigned for the division of Uttar Pradesh.

The Hindutva-oriented BJP launched two yatras, led by former Chief Minister Rajnath Singh and party national vice-president Kalraj Mishra. Corruption in the present government and the establishment of “positive governance” on the Gujarat-Madhya Pradesh model form the thrust of the party's campaign. The BJP is significantly silent on the divisive Ayodhya Ram Mandir issue but has promised “Ram rajya” if elected to power. The party's traditional vote bank, the upper castes, has apparently started moving back to it since the 2007 Assembly and 2009 Lok Sabha elections, but the leadership is not clear whether this will be enough to put up a creditable electoral performance.
The Congress' campaign is driven primarily by the extensive padayatras undertaken by party general secretary Rahul Gandhi. The party has divided the State into 10 organisational zones, allocating each one of these to key party leaders. The Congress is essentially trying to highlight the government's lack of concern for Dalit communities other than Chamars and convert them into a support base. The party leadership is of the view that a large segment of Muslim voters will root for the party as in 2009. “This, along with a significant chunk of upper-caste votes, can increase our strength in the Assembly from 22 to 80 or even 100,” a senior State leader said. However, he admitted that the party leadership had not been able to create an emotive situation to make this happen. “The corruption charges faced by the Union government and the anti-Congress thrust of the Anna Hazare-led anti-corruption movement are not doing us any good,” he said.
There is also a feeling among the major political players that new entrants such as the Peace Party, which draws strength from the Most Backward Castes (MBCs) and the Muslim community, can become crucial in the forthcoming elections. In a stiff four-cornered contest, a tilt of even 1,000 to 3,000 votes can change the political arithmetic in a constituency. In 2007, in approximately 120 seats, the victory margin was below 5,000. Smaller groups and parties can have a big say in such seats.
Mayawati's proposal for new States was apparently based on a consideration of the impact of small groups in a localised situation. But the question whether this will turn things decisively in the BSP's favour has no definite answer at the moment.

‘Height of political bankruptcy'
Interview with Akhilesh Yadav, Samajwadi Party leader.

Akhilesh Yadav: “There are other issues, too.”
FOR Akhilesh Yadav, the president of the Samajwadi Party (S.P.) in Uttar Pradesh and a sitting member of the Lok Sabha for the past 11 years, the current phase of his political career must certainly rate as the most important one in the decade and a half he has spent in public life. The single most important reason for this is that the young leader has much greater responsibility now in leading the political campaign of the S.P. in the elections to the State Assembly, which are due in early 2012. Akhilesh Yadav toured most parts of the vast State in his “Kranti Rath” (vehicle of revolution) in the past few weeks.
Venkitesh Ramakrishnan met Akhilesh Yadav for an interview, in the context of the impending elections as also the recent proposal of Chief Minister Mayawati to divide the State into four. Excerpts:
The announcement by Mayawati on the division of Uttar Pradesh has brought in a new qualitative dimension to the election preparations in the State. Many observers are of the view that the announcement has managed to put the campaign of the major opposition parties, such as the S.P., the Congress and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), into disarray. What is your view?
I would call this a very wrong understanding of Uttar Pradesh's political scene. If anything, the announcement has underlined the disarray within Mayawatiji's Bahujan Samaj Party as also its government. You run a State for nearly five years and at the end of it you have nothing positive to show to the people. It is in such a context that you come up with gimmicks like a proposal to divide the State. Even a cursory analysis of the proposal will show that it is a clear admission of failure of governance by the current regime. What you are saying is that we were not able to do anything in the last five years because the State was too big and that if we have smaller States in the future, we will try and do something. This is nothing but the height of political bankruptcy.
Any number of social and economic analysts have upheld the case to divide Uttar Pradesh. The argument is that it would decentralise governance and bring larger good to the people of the various regions.
Division of a State is not the only method to bring about decentralisation. There are any number of solutions, from decentralisation of planning to the local bodies and setting up of focussed regional development plans to creatively addressing regional, local and ethnic concerns of different segments of the population. Creating a new State mechanically without attempting to do all this will only worsen matters.
Eleven years ago, three States were created in north India. Has the life of people got better there? Do Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh and Uttarakhand look like model States to you with their track record of political instability, rise and spread of extremism of different sorts, and widespread corruption? So, statehood by itself is no solution. While dividing a historical entity like Uttar Pradesh, there are other issues, too. How do we divide our resources like water and power, which are indeed scarce and generate highly sensitive debates and tussles among the people?
Will the S.P.'s election campaign revolve around these expositions?
Of course, these points will come up in our campaign. We will also be pointing out that States such as Punjab and Haryana, which were carved out long ago, are yet to find a solution to such fundamental issues as naming a capital city and are forced to share the same capital. We will also point out what is happening in Andhra Pradesh, the issue of where Hyderabad would go on the creation of Telangana. But this will certainly not be the central theme of our campaign.
Our thrust will be to highlight the very problems that are sought to be covered up through the useless debate on division of the State. These problems are the total collapse of law and order, rampant corruption, which has converted the government into an extortionist, and the colossal lack of development in both the rural and urban sectors of the State. I am sure no amount of cover-up will help the Mayawati regime throw dust in the people's eyes.

Reorganising ideas
Mayawati may have charted a new political course for U.P., but others have their doubts.

SARDAR K.M. Panikkar. His 'note of dissent' in the SRC in 1953 sought the bifurcation of U.P. to avoid imbalance in the Indian federal system on account of the dominant role U.P. could seek on the strength of its numbers in Parliament.
ON November 16, when Chief Minister Mayawati announced her Cabinet's decision to propose the division of Uttar Pradesh into four smaller States, she also asserted the commitment of her party, the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP), and its government to this move in order to end the crippling regional disparities in the country's most populous State.
While the merits and demerits of this assertion are sure to be analysed on different platforms, there is little doubt that her government had made several proposals to the Union government on the issue of regional disparities. In July 2007, barely three months after Mayawati assumed office, her government submitted a detailed proposal to the Centre for development assistance of Rs.80,000 crore. Of this amount, approximately Rs.14,000 crore was earmarked for a special package to build socio-economic infrastructure in backward Poorvanchal and Bundelkhand, the two regions that have been identified as potential States in the new proposal.
According to Mayawati, the Cabinet was forced to take the decision of November 16 and have it endorsed in the State Assembly because the government did not get any response from the Centre on its proposals for minimising regional disparities. Evidently, this claim of lack of response from the Centre is also bound to be a topic of debate in different forums.
Whatever the outcome of the debates, Mayawati and the BSP have doubtless charted a new course in the political history of Uttar Pradesh by calling for the division of the State while firmly in power. Interestingly, all political parties in the State have made this demand at some time or the other, either officially or through informal means. Even sections of the Mulayam Singh Yadav-led Samajwadi Party (S.P.), which are opposed to the Mayawati government's move, discussed, in 1996, the setting up of a new States Reorganisation Commission (SRC) to address regional concerns, including in Uttar Pradesh.
Equally interestingly, the demand was muted when the parties were in power either on their own or in alliance. Even Ajit Singh, the foremost champion of the reorganisation of Uttar Pradesh and the creation of Harit Pradesh, did not “press the issue” when his party, the Rashtriya Lok Dal (RLD), shared power with the S.P. between 2003 and 2007.
But will Mayawati's decision lead to a determined movement, in political and administrative terms, for the formation of the new States? Opinions across the State, especially in key centres in the regions proposed as new States, are marked by scepticism. So much so there is no clarity on the geographical and administrative contours of the new States. As per the broad concept that is in circulation, Paschim Pradesh should comprise the majority of the districts in five administrative divisions, namely, Saharanpur, Meerut, Agra, Moradabad and Bareilly. Poorvanchal should have the 20 districts of eastern Uttar Pradesh. Awadh Pradesh should have an unspecified number of central districts.
Bundelkhand, considered to be one of the most backward regions of the country, is likely to be the most complex to form. According to activists and organisations that have been demanding it for long, the State should have seven districts of Uttar Pradesh, including Jhansi, Banda and Chitrakoot, and seven districts of Madhya Pradesh. Are the political parties in Madhya Pradesh ready to accept this?
While scepticism on these questions continues to mount, activists such as Niroop Reddy of the National Federation for New States (NFNS) and Anjana Prakash of Poorvanchal Banao Manch (PBM) aver that Mayawati has given a new impetus to their long-standing demand.
The Bundelkhand Mukti Morcha (BMM), with its minor support base, backs Mayawati. Raja Bundela, the president of the BMM, said: “Mayawati has gone a step ahead by passing a resolution in the U.P. Assembly to decentralise administrative units. We have been talking about it for a long time now. The funds that come for Bundelkhand's development have been consistently diverted to other regions. This has led to so much migration from the region that a native of Bundelkhand is slowly becoming more a resident of Delhi [towards which most labourers migrate] than of his own village. Only a separate State, with its own representatives, can end this unbalanced development. I give my full support to Mayawati.”
Speaking to Frontline, Anjana Prakash stated that for the first time in the history of independent India a ruling politician of Uttar Pradesh had shown the guts to articulate the real aspirations of the people. “These aspirations, which were reflected even in the first States Reorganisation Commission in 1953, were repeatedly pushed under the carpet by the ruling classes of Uttar Pradesh. Now Mayawati has made bold to bring them out,” she said.
The PBM leader's reference is obviously to the ‘note of dissent' put up by Sardar K.M. Panikkar in the SRC in 1953, which suggested bifurcation of the then Uttar Pradesh. The note of dissent argued that Uttar Pradesh at that time accounted for one-sixth of India's population, which was equal to the combined population of Andhra, Telangana, Karnataka and Kerala or larger than the population of Punjab, Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh taken together.
He also argued that Uttar Pradesh was likely to create an imbalance to the Indian federal system. He pointed out that accounting for 85 of the 499 members in the Lok Sabha and 34 in the Rajya Sabha, Uttar Pradesh was likely to seek a dominant role. This could lead to a feeling of distrust and resentment in other States. The territories of a proposed new State of Agra as visualised by Panikkar included Meerut, Agra, and Jhansi divisions. Agra was proposed as the capital.
The SRC went on to evaluate these suggestions. It principally took note of four arguments. These were “unwieldy size”, which could adversely affect the “efficiency of the administration”; the “lack of commonality in physical and geographical terms”; the disparity among the different zones within U.P. and the backwardness of its eastern districts; and, finally, the State's size and the extent of its representation in Parliament, which could exercise a dominant influence in all-India affairs and create an imbalance “within the federal structure”.
The SRC's official report contended that “there are in fact no clear or necessary connections between the size of a State and the quality of its administration”. It also dismissed the view that “the present commanding position of U.P. with its representation in both houses of Parliament broadly reflecting its numerical strength violates this important principle” that “a fair balance between constituent units is an essential condition for the working of a federal system”.
The SRC concluded by majority vote that none of the arguments in favour of “reorganisation” was powerful enough to justify the “dislocation and disturbance” that would inevitably ensue if U.P. were divided.

AJIT SINGH OF the Rashtriya Lok Dal addressing a rally in Mawana near Meerut in 2006 demanding the creation of Harit Pradesh. Despite organising such rallies, he did not press the issue seriously when the RLD shared power with the S.P. in U.P. between 2003 and 2007. Today, the RLD is in no hurry to divide U.P. and favours the constitution of a new States Reorganisation Commission.
But despite this rejection, the idea came up in several ways over the next six decades. A prominent reappearance was during the fourth Five-Year Plan period (1969-74), when the regional disparities in U.P., with special emphasis on the backwardness of regions such as Poorvanchal, Bundelkhand and the hill districts of Uttarakhand, were in focus. As a result, a special hill division was created in 1970 under the leadership of the then Chief Minister, Narayan Dutt Tiwari. It was this beginning that led to the strengthening of the idea of Uttarakhand, the development of an emotive movement for the State in the 1990s, and the final creation of the State in 2000.
During this process, in 1982-83 the district plan scheme was introduced as an effort to overcome regional disparities not only in Uttarakhand but in other backward regions. It stipulated that 30 per cent of the annual plan should be district oriented. But even after almost three decades of its implementation, the regional disparities in U.P. still remain. Substantiation of this is available in different forms, including documents prepared by government departments.
One such document is the Uttar Pradesh Human Development Report. The Uttar Pradesh Human Development Report 2000 specifically explored the socio-economic development status at the district level. Correlates of development were tabulated, as part of the study, covering agriculture, industry, general infrastructure, economic infrastructure, social infrastructure and the Composite Index of Development. The study revealed the vast disparities that existed within different parts of the State. The western districts were ahead in almost every segment that was considered. Districts in Bundelkhand and eastern U.P. figured predominantly in the ‘backward' list in every category.
The Uttar Pradesh Human Development Report 2006 also highlights similar issues. Per capita Net District Domestic Product (NDDP) of the western region is about 70 per cent higher than that of the eastern region. The difference is around 10 per cent in the case of the other regions.
According to a senior BSP leader considered to be part of the party's think tank, Mayawati considered all these aspects before making the announcement. The leader spoke on condition of anonymity since “Behenji” has prohibited all others in the party from speaking on the issue. He admitted that none of the proposed regions had a pro-State-formation movement as was the case in Jharkhand and Uttarakhand before they finally came into being in 2000. “In Marxian terms, one can say that the objective conditions for the creation of the new State are there but the subjective factors have not developed,” he said.
Travelling through different parts of western Uttar Pradesh, the absence of the “subjective factors” was indeed palpable. So much so that public responses in places like Bulundshahr and Ghaziabad bordered on the cynical. “Nothing is going to come out of these moves. There will be a hundred and one complications even in deciding the very contours of the new States and there is no guarantee that the leadership of any party will be serious in addressing these. Moreover, all these processes will ultimately be against the so-called prosperous western Uttar Pradesh, as special consideration will be given for the allegedly backward Poorvanchal and Bundelkhand,” said Vinod Tyagi, a trader in Bulundshahr.
The responses were similar in Varanasi in Poorvanchal. Mohammed Yasin, joint secretary of the Varanasi-based Anjuman Intazamiya Masjid, did not find any merit in this “gimmicky announcement” at the fag end of the BSP's tenure.
Even in Bundelkhand most communities and political parties were hardly moved by Mayawati's proposal. In the part that is in Madhya Pradesh, the Ahirwars seem to have consolidated their support for the proposal. The Ahirwars are the largest community of Dalits in M.P. and are traditionally close to the Chamars of U.P. and to the BSP.
“Even if our MLA is a Thakur or a Yadav and if he is from the BSP, a separate Bundelkhand will give us some immunity. The Uttar Pradesh administration is much more people-friendly than Madhya Pradesh's,” said Santosh Ahirwar, who travels between U.P and M.P. for work. He added that the Dalits of M.P. would want to shift to U.P. permanently as the Kanshi Ram colonies that the BSP had built for Dalits in most districts had adequate facilities in terms of health care and the public distribution system, something they did not have in M.P. He said at least 30,000 Ahirwars from M.P.'s Bundelkhand had already shifted to Jhansi and Hamirpur in U.P.'s Bundelkhand.
The local BJP legislators have strictly opposed the formation of a separate Bundelkhand despite the party's advocacy of smaller States. The Congress is tight-lipped on the issue. Only the BSP has raked up the issue in every public meeting, projecting a separate State as a means of securing social justice for the Scheduled Castes.
Meanwhile, S.P. activists have started campaigning across the State. They argue that Uttar Pradesh's regional disparities need to be addressed by taking special measures to focus on regional planning and not by the creation of new States. They say the new States will start with multiple conflicts on sharing of resources, including water and electricity, something the country cannot afford at this juncture.
S.P. leaders point out that the experience of the newly formed States of Uttarakhand, Jharkhand and Chhattisgarh show that their formation has not resulted in any great improvement for their people. Even supporters of small States, such as the leaders of the RLD, have taken a nuanced position, obviously dictated by political considerations. According to them there is no need to rush into anything and, perhaps, even the constitution of a second SRC, as suggested by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in 2007, should be considered.
In this mélange of views, contradictions and confusions vis-à-vis the restructuring of Uttar Pradesh, the historian Gyanesh Kudaisya's observation about the need for new types of States is extremely relevant. In his seminal essay “Constructing the Heartland: Uttar Pradesh in India's Body Politic”, Kudaisya argues that the idea of the Hindi heartland as represented by Uttar Pradesh has become antiquated and there is a need for a rethink on the geographical and administrative entity.
But he also points out that the need is for States that do not carry forward the administrative and ideological legacies of models that have failed. In his view, the new type of States should be representative, decentralised and inclusive, and these are the new qualities that need to be considered.

Lopsided growth
U.P.'s GDP grew at 7.28 per cent in the past five years, but the State ranks low in virtually every area of socio-economic development.

Mayawati poses next to large statues of herself, B.R. Ambedkar and BSP founder Kanshi Ram at a newly inaugurated park in Noida, a suburb situated in Uttar Pradesh, New Delhi, on October 14.
IF statistics on gross domestic product (GDP) are the only criteria to evaluate the performance of a government, the Mayawati-led Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) government in Uttar Pradesh will have to be rated as one with highly impressive credentials. For, India's most populous State has recorded a growth rate of 7.28 per cent between 2007 and 2011, the period of Mayawati's rule. The government's public relations officers point out that this growth rate has been achieved at a time when the Indian economy has been hard-pressed in the face of challenges posed by the global recession. It is further pointed out that Uttar Pradesh ranks high among the five States that have registered growth rates higher than the targets they had set to achieve in the Eleventh Plan period (2007-12). The State's target was 6.10 per cent, but in 2010-11 alone it was able to achieve a GDP growth of 8.08 per cent.
This is only one side of the story, the growth measured on the basis of statistics. As far as social and related economic indicators are concerned, Uttar Pradesh lags behind several States. Studies by government and non-governmental agencies have shown that in the case of virtually every indicator of social development such as infant mortality rate, literacy, birth rate, death rate, per capita income, health care, teacher-pupil ratio in primary schools and electrification of villages, Uttar Pradesh ranks 13th or 14th among the 16 major States. The State continues to account for nearly 25 per cent of the infant deaths in the country and has a total Human Development Index (HDI) in the range of 0.5. There has, however, been marginal improvement in indicators such as literacy and per capita income though these cannot be compared with the record of States such as Tamil Nadu and Kerala.
The government's claim is that it has recorded major gains in five areas: collection of revenue, enhancement of infrastructure, industrial development, strengthening of the agricultural sector, and empowerment of the weaker sections of society. However, all the claims except the one on collection of revenue have been challenged even by those who are working in these sectors. When the BSP came to power in 2007, Mayawati's then deputy, Satish Chandra Mishra, stated that the party's pursuit of the Sarva Samaj welfare agenda would involve making the best use of the policy of economic liberalisation and the politics of empowerment by adopting a ‘middle path'. While there has been no specific reference to this comment by the BSP leadership in later years, several observers of the government on the two sides – the votaries of economic liberalisation and the advocates of empowerment of weaker sections – have pointed out that the Mayawati regime's track record is neither here nor there.
A recent study by the Observer Research Foundation (ORF), a Delhi-based think tank, made a qualitative assessment of the overall situation prevailing in the State as follows: “In recent years, the State is exhibiting some robust numbers around growth and other socio-economic indicators; however, the development is largely skewed, with significant parts of the population still a distant way from the benefits of the numeric achievements. There is inequity in distribution of most of the provisioning like infrastructure, social services, with strong cartels often sabotaging the development agenda. In addition, the quality of the provision and services are also questionable, with no real measure to assess the quality. Further, the increasing rich-poor divide, politico-bureaucratic nexus and inequitable distribution of wealth has made the State a cause of concern for a number of people. The situation is arising primarily because the focus of development has shifted from the people to more on upward management or pleasing the masters. There is a race to show numeric achievements without any concern of whether it is affecting the lives of the common person or not. Settling personal vendettas, whether in politics or administration, has become the order of the day.”
While this is the view of a think tank that seeks to work within the institutional framework and negotiate with the government and the bureaucracy on policies and their implementation, a large number of social organisations that have supported the people's struggles in different parts of the State echo these views, albeit with a different emphasis. Satyam Verma, trade union leader and social activist who has been involved in a number of agitations in eastern Uttar Pradesh, particularly against land acquisition in favour of corporate entities, told Frontline that the ideological orientation of the government was completely dictated by neoliberal economic policies and hence it was loaded heavily in favour of corporate bigwigs.
“The Mayawati government has spent crores of rupees on beautifying certain streets of Lucknow, the State capital, and on initiating express highways, but all this has not benefited the poor or weaker sections of society. On the contrary, it has resulted in the displacement of thousands of poor people from their habitats and the confiscation of thousands of hectares of land for corporate interests. In fact, the brutal suppression of the struggles of sand workers, landless and poor peasants in Allahabad-Kausambi [region] unmasked the real character of the government. The peasants and workers belonging to the Allahabad-Kausambi region are struggling against the illegal control over sand mining and riverbed land exercised by the landlords and the mafia. The sand trade, agricultural operations on river banks, fishing, river transport, and all other economic activities linked to rivers are under the control of the mafia and the landlords, who are aided and abetted by the BSP leadership, including Ministers,” he said.
Lenin Raghuvanshi, a Varanasi-based Dalit rights activist, said the government had failed to evolve a policy implementation package that would benefit large sections of the population, particularly the underprivileged. “The single most important thrust of the Mayawati government has been on symbolism. This is reflected in the building of huge commemorative structures in the name of bygone Dalit leaders such as B.R. Ambedkar and Kanshi Ram, and even living leaders like Mayawati. This brings no benefit to the lives of the downtrodden, and there is no concern for this. Even the half-hearted Dalit empowerment [initiative] that has taken place under the government is confined to Mayawati's own Chamar community, leaving communities such as Musahar, considered to be the ‘Dalitest' of Dalits, in the same socio-economic situation they were several decades ago.” Raghuvanshi said the cartels and vested interests referred to in studies such as the one done by the ORF were reported to be business partners of the BSP leadership.

A SAMAJWADI PARTY MLA shows a garland of fake notes that members had earlier displayed in the Assembly in Lucknow in May to register their protest against the rampant corruption in the State.
The uniform opinion among all sections of observers is that the government has failed to deliver on two crucial counts: maintenance of law and order and checking corruption. The National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) has ranked Uttar Pradesh highest in the incidence of crime. The State registered 33.9 per cent of the crimes reported in 2010, with high figures for murder and rape. Although the figures did not show an increase in the incidence of crime since 2009, the State continued to top the nation's crime chart.
In the area of political and administrative corruption, all sections of society complain that the current regime has scaled new heights. A few months ago, a senior bureaucrat told Frontline: “Corruption has, for long, been accepted as a norm in the socio-political life of Uttar Pradesh. Successive governments, led by parties of all hues, have promoted it almost openly. The current government and its leadership have persisted on the same path and have, in many ways, pushed the blatancy quotient of corruption to new levels.” Several developments, including a report of the Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG) in 2010, have upheld the veracity of this observation. The CAG found 17,500 cases of corruption and misuse of funds in 68 State government departments, including Public Works, Agriculture, Animal Husbandry, Sugarcane and Sugar Industries, Irrigation, Industrial Development, Social Welfare, Food and Civil Supplies, Tourism, Urban Development, and Cooperatives.
The correlation between corruption and the collapse of law and order was highlighted by a major corruption case in recent times. This was the Rs.8,600-crore National Rural Health Mission (NRHM) scam. Incidents relating to the scam led to the killing of three senior government officers – Dr Vinod Kumar Arya, the Chief Medical Officer (CMO) for Family Welfare in Lucknow; Dr B.P. Singh, another CMO for Family Welfare; and Dr Yogendra Singh Sachan, a deputy CMO – within a span of three months. Sachan, who was arrested for his alleged involvement in the embezzlement of NRHM funds, was found dead in the Lucknow district jail.
When this case came to light, Union Rural Development Minister Jairam Ramesh pointed out that there was large-scale misuse of funds in Uttar Pradesh in the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme, too. He demanded an inquiry by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) into this. Mayawati, on her part, dismissed the allegations as politically motivated and rejected the demand for a CBI probe.
The Mulayam Singh Yadav-led Samajwadi Party (S.P.), the principal opposition in the State, has raised doubts about the government's “success” in revenue collection. The S.P. leadership said successive governments in the 1990s and between 2000 and 2006 had, from time to time, addressed the issues of economic deterioration and fiscal deficit, and that a ‘White Paper on the Fiscal Situation' had been issued in 1998-99. “On the basis of this, several moves were made aimed at course correction. On the basis of these reforms, U.P. became the first recipient at the sub-national level of fiscal restructuring from the World Bank. Following this, the Mulayam Singh government passed the Fiscal Responsibility and Budget Management Act in 2004, which put forward the principles of fiscal management disallowing the State to spend beyond a certain limit. All this led to some improvement in fiscal indicators, especially in 2005-06 and 2006-07. As a consequence, there was greater allocation of funds for priority areas such as power, roads and health. And it was these initiatives that led to greater collection of revenue. The Mayawati government has followed in these steps, of course, in a skewed manner. They have brought in some gains basically on account of the strength of the initiatives. So the BSP government cannot take credit for it,” S.P. leader Akhilesh Yadav said. Clearly, the political jousting will continue with conflicting claims on growth and developments.
Commenting on the overall socio-political situation in the State, the political analyst and advocate Indra Bhushan Singh said that beyond statistics the factor of public impression was also important in the evaluation of Ministries, and on this score, the Mayawati government did not rate anywhere near the Nitish Kumar government in neighbouring Bihar. He said: “What people are looking for are not statistics on high growth rates or lofty announcements, but the political will to create an environment of trust, the sense to evolve simple and scalable models of development that will affect everyday life and, above all, a sense of safety, security and justice. On this ground, the problem with Uttar Pradesh is that no political leadership inspires confidence. That shared absence could well mean an electoral advantage for the BSP and its leader, who has strong control over a particular section of society.”

Smaller the better?
The growth registered by Uttarakhand and Chhattisgarh in the 11 years since their birth has not translated into human development.

UTTARAKHAND CHIEF MINISTER B.C. Khanduri (right) coming out of the Assembly building along with former Chief Minister B.S. Koshiyari.
UTTARAKHAND, Chhattisgarh and Jharkhand, the three small States that redrew the map of India in 2000, were the most backward regions of Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh and Bihar respectively on the eve of the States' formation. The parent States themselves were so underdeveloped that, along with Rajasthan, they were referred to as BIMARU States, indicating their utter backwardness. It cannot be denied that 11 years later, the new States have shown signs of significant economic development although the social and health indicators are not so encouraging.
Development drive
Uttarakhand, which was carved out of 13 hill districts of Uttar Pradesh, has emerged as a major growth story, but at a huge environmental cost.
The State's growth rate today is pegged at 11.3 per cent compared with 2.9 per cent in 2000. In the past 10 years, it has notched up an average growth rate of over 10 per cent, while Uttar Pradesh has been lagging behind at 5-6 per cent. Since more than 90 per cent of the State's land area is mountainous and 60 per cent of its land is covered by forests, Uttarakhand lacked road connectivity at the time of its formation. The governments that came to power subsequently gave utmost importance to developing infrastructure and set about building roads. In 2000, the State had 13,500 kilometres of roads. Now it boasts a road network of 32,000 km.

FOR ITS GROWTH, Uttarakhand has paid a heavy price in terms of environmental destruction. Here, the river Bhagirathi, on which the Tehri dam is being built, at Devprayag in January 2011.
The State launched a development drive, and it has been among the top three States recording the highest growth rate in the past few years. The per capita income increased from Rs.14,300 a year in 2000-01 to Rs.55,870 in 2011, which is better than the national average, of Rs.54,835. The local economy, before the creation of the State, was described as “money order economy” as most of the employable youth sought work outside the State, either in the defence forces or elsewhere and would send home cash by money order. This was the mainstay of the economy. Not anymore. Since the State came into being, more than two lakh youth have found employment. This became possible as industrial investment went up from Rs.5,000 crore to Rs.30,000 crore. Industrial giants such as Hero Honda, Mahindra & Mahindra, Hindustan Lever, the ITC group, the Birla group and Tata Motors have set up shop in the State, with an estimated combined investment of Rs.20,000 crore.
The industrial boom was made possible by the 10-year concessional industrial package granted to the State in 2003 by the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government, which included a tax holiday and capital investment subsidy. Now, industry-friendly policies of the Congress government in the State are expected to give a fresh impetus to the process of industrialisation.
Between 2003 and 2010, the annual industrial growth rate in the State was over 24 per cent; now it is still a respectable 8-9 per cent. In March 2010, the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance government at the Centre ended the industrial incentives to Uttarakhand.
“True, the State's development had a lot to do with the special package given by the Centre. Similar incentives were given to Himachal Pradesh too, but we have surpassed that State in all ways,” former Chief Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank said. Speaking in favour of smaller States, he said they were more manageable as it was possible for the government to have direct dialogue with the people and frame policies accordingly.
Uttarakhand has been a tourism hub. The State was declared the best tourism destination in 2005. It also boasts of a good school education system. In the past decade, Uttarakhand also emerged as a centre for higher education. Universities imparting specialised professional education, such as the University of Petroleum and Energy Studies, which is the only one of its kind in Asia to give technical education specific to the energy sector needs, and other institutes of technology, law, and oriental studies, have been established.
But the growth has been achieved at a huge environmental cost. Frenetic road construction, exploitation of the hydroelectric potential and the rush to achieve industrial development have also meant that forests are cut with impunity and rivers have been diverted into tunnels for the generation of hydel power. The local population is up in arms against the environmental degradation. Following one such agitation, the government stalled the work on many hydropower projects, including one executed by the NTPC at Loharinagpala on the Bhagirathi.

According to Hemant Dhyani, a research scholar in nanosciences at the Jawaharlal Nehru University, Delhi, who is also a Ganga Ahvaan (a campaign to save the Ganga) activist, the mad pace of construction in the hills has done irreparable damage to the ecology of the State. The government seems to be totally unmindful of the long-term damage the present development strategy could cause.
According to Nishank, in a State which is covered by forests and rivers, the government has to walk a tightrope. “We have to depend on whatever natural resources we have so at times people do get antagonised, but then at times there is no alternative either,” he says, admitting that sometimes the ecological costs are actually high. That is why, he says, the Centre should have a separate policy to provide special funds for Himalayan States as they cannot exploit their natural resources fully. “But we still have to handle problems such as employment creation and development, so a fine balance has to be maintained,” he says.
Mineral strength
Chhattisgarh has managed to achieve a high growth rate owing to its immense mineral and natural resources. As it turned 10 last year, the State posted the highest economic growth rate of 11.49 per cent among all Indian States, followed by Gujarat at 10.53 per cent.
But the growth story is a study in contradictions. While mining and mining-based industries, specifically steel and power, have helped push up the State's gross domestic product, one really has to look hard for qualitative improvement in people's lives. With an area of 1,36,000 sq km, Chhattisgarh is the 10th largest State. More than half the State is covered by thick forests (56 per cent) and its population density is 189 per sq km, much better than the national average of 382 per sq km. Its literacy rate of 71.04 per cent is close to the national figure of 74.04 per cent. Its sex ratio, at 991 per 1,000 males, is much better than the national average of 940.
The State, which harnessed its massive coal reserves to generate power, has a per capita energy consumption of 1,547 units as against the 779 units at the national level. It is an energy surplus State today, which was not the case when it was part of Madhya Pradesh. The State has managed to maintain an average growth rate of 10.05 per cent for the past six years, which is the highest for any State in India. Its annual plan size has increased more than 13 times since 2001-02: it rose from Rs.1,216 crore in 2001-02 to Rs.16,268 crore in 2011-12. The State's growth story is reflected in the per capita income too: from Rs.12,483 in 2000-01, it has now risen to an impressive Rs.33,952.

POLICE COMMANDOS UNDERGOING operational training at the Counter Terrorism and Jungle Warfare College in Kanker, Chhattisgarh, in April. Although the State has shown good economic growth, Left extremist violence and poor human development indicators have tarnished its image.
This feat has been possible despite the fact that 10 out of its 18 districts are affected by left-wing extremism, more than 40 per cent of its population is below the poverty line, and over 75 per cent of its population can be categorised as small and marginal farmers.
Chhattisgarh's growth can be attributed to its rich mineral resources. The State accounts for 27 per cent of the steel/sponge iron production in the country, 30 per cent of aluminium and 15 per cent of cement. It has managed to electrify 97 per cent of its villages, has ensured power for all 24x7, has harnessed solar and biomass power to meet its energy needs, and has been able to energise 1.34 lakh pumps in the past five years. The State has an ambitious target of adding 30,000 MW in the next five years, with an investment of Rs.1,50,000 crore. The city of Korba will have an installed capacity of 10,000 MW by 2013, making it the energy capital of India.
Every big steel company is active in the State. The National Mineral Development Corporation (NMDC), Jindal Steel, and the Tata, Essar and Bhushan groups are setting up steel plants with a cumulative capacity of 20 million tonnes a year and a total investment of more than Rs.1,00,000 crore. The State ranks first in industrial investment in the country, with $63 billion in 2010.
The State has not done badly in the agricultural sector too. It is a major rice-producing State, the second largest in India in terms of procurement. It procures approximately 50 lakh tonnes of paddy annually. The State has achieved a 75 per cent increase in the outlay for agriculture and allied sectors, which stands at Rs.1,385.02 crore.
The procurement process in the State is done online, which ensures total transparency. Details of every farmer are available online and nearly 10 lakh farmers receive computer-generated cheques without delay. Fifty lakh cheque leaves, worth Rs.16,777 crore, have been given to farmers since 2007-08.
The State has received accolades for putting in place an effective public distribution system (PDS) as well. It has 10,846 fair price shops, which means one in each gram panchayat. The State has ensured that by the sixth of every month, commodities are supplied to fair price shops. Steps have been taken to prevent pilferage.

Although it has some bad social indicators – 52.9 per cent of the children are malnourished as against the national average of 48 per cent and 63 per cent of the pregnant women are anaemic as against the national average of 58 per cent – the State has managed to reduce the infant mortality rate from 76 to 57 in 10 years. Its institutional deliveries increased from 20 to 41 and the State's midday meal scheme has been a huge success.
The small size of the State has ensured that governance reaches the doorsteps of its people. For 10 days every year, all government officials, from patwaris to secretaries and even Ministers (sometimes even the Chief Minister), visit the villages to clear all the pending applications and cases. Direct feedback is taken from the villages and new schemes are formulated on the basis of the feedback.
No wonder, Chief Minister Raman Singh is a contented man today. He told Frontline recently that Chhattisgarh was a model State that had the right size, natural resources and political stability. “Today there is talk of smaller States because of the success of Chhattisgarh. None of our planning is for five years. Our plan on power, PDS, mining, social sector and other things are framed keeping in view the long-term needs of the State,” he said.
If the development indicators are real, it is hard to explain the naxalite problem, farmers' suicides, and rampant poverty in the State. Chhattisgarh is grappling with the problem of Left extremism in 10 of the 18 districts and has become a crucible for naxalite activities. The State has not shown any political will to tackle the problem at the socio-economic level. Instead, the budgetary allocation for the Police Department has gone up from Rs.97.48 crore in 2000-01 to Rs.1,434 crore in 2011-12.
Political observers see this inaction as a deliberate ploy. “The government is not interested in tackling this problem at all as this ensures unchecked and unaccounted flow of funds,” says M.K. Nandy, State secretary of the Communist Party of India (Marxist). In his opinion, the State's failure to tackle the basic land-related issues, employment problems and exploitation by the forest mafia has only added to the problem.
According to the development scientist Shaibal Gupta of the Asian Development Research Institute, after the State's creation the problem got magnified and this, he says, is a blessing in disguise because it can probably get resolved in due course. “But these are pan-Indian problems and should not be seen as State specific,” he cautions.

The legal position
Parliament is not bound by the U.P. Assembly resolution seeking a four-way split of the State.

TELANGANA RASHTRA SAMITHI workers at a rally in Hyderabad in support of their demand for a separate State. Under Article 3, Parliament can, by simple majority, form a new State by separation of territory.
THE resolution passed in the Uttar Pradesh Legislative Assembly on November 21 asking the Centre to reorganise the State into four States is not a legal requirement for the creation of new States. At best, it is an expression of the desire of the members of the Assembly, which may be considered a relevant input by the Centre whenever it takes the initiative to reorganise the State. It is not an indication that with the U.P. Assembly taking the first step, the other steps necessary for the fruition of the process are bound to follow.
The Madhya Pradesh Assembly passed a resolution in favour of the creation of Chhattisgarh and forwarded the same to the Centre in 1993. But the new State came into existence only in 2000, after the requirements under Article 3 of the Constitution (dealing with “formation of new States and alteration of areas, boundaries or names of existing States”) were fulfilled.
The passage of a resolution in the Assembly can be seen as the first of a series of attempts by the political class in Uttar Pradesh to build public opinion within the State and to bring pressure on the Centre. The Assembly will get another opportunity to discuss and comment on the nitty-gritty of the reorganisation when the President makes a formal reference of the Bill to be introduced in Parliament, that is, if the Centre accepts the Assembly's resolution and takes the required initiative to draft a Bill.
Under Article 3, Parliament may by law (a) form a new State by separation of territory from any State or by uniting two or more States or parts of States or by uniting any territory to a part of any State; (b) increase the area of any State; (c) diminish the area of any State; (d) alter the boundaries of any State; or (e) alter the name of any State.
The Article has a proviso stipulating that no Bill for the purpose shall be introduced in either House of Parliament except on the recommendation of the President and unless, where the proposal contained in the Bill affects the area, boundaries or name of any of the States, the Bill has been referred by the President to the State legislature for expressing its views thereon within such period as may be specified in the reference or within such further period as the President may allow and the period so specified or allowed has expired.
A Supreme Court judgment has clarified that this proviso does not mean that the views expressed by the Assembly on the proposed Bill are binding on Parliament or that a fresh reference by the President to the Assembly will become necessary if Parliament makes changes in the Bill after a discussion. The idea is that Parliament should have before it the views of the State legislature affected by the proposals contained in the Bill, but Parliament is free to deal with the matter in any manner it thinks fit, even reject the State legislature's comments. If the State legislature fails to express its views within the stipulated time, Parliament is free to proceed with the matter. The word ‘State' under Article 3 includes the Union Territories, too, whereas under the proviso, Union Territories have been excluded from the definition of States because Parliament itself legislates for U.Ts.
Article 4 (which deals with “Laws made under Articles 2 and 3 to provide for the amendment of the First and the Fourth Schedules and supplemental, incidental and consequential matters”) says that the law referred to in Article 3 shall not be deemed to be an amendment of the Constitution for the purposes of Article 368 (which governs parliamentary procedures to make constitutional amendments). This means Article 4 obviates the need for laws made under Article 3 as it does not require the support of two-thirds of the members of each House of Parliament present and voting as required under Article 368. In other words, Parliament can pass the law to reorganise States with a simple majority.
Scholars have interpreted Article 4 as suggesting that Parliament can make a law to reorganise the States and such a law will not be invalid even if it is inconsistent with any constitutional provision. Parliament, it has been said, thus has plenary and comprehensive powers to pass a law to reorganise the States and Union Territories and to deal with all the problems – constitutional, legal, administrative – arising as a result.
Parliament has so far passed 20 laws under Article 3 to reorganise various States. The last Act to be enacted under this provision is the Madhya Pradesh Reorganisation Act, 2000. (The Bihar, and Uttar Pradesh Reorganisation Acts, 2000, preceded this.)
According to a Supreme Court judgment in 1967, Parliament cannot form by law a State that does not have effective legislative, executive or judicial organs. Therefore, the law is expected to make the necessary supplemental, incidental and consequential changes, essential for effective State administration, expenditure and distribution of revenue, apportionment of assets and liabilities, provisions regarding services, application and adaptation of laws, transfer of proceedings and other related matters.
Still, the relatively easy and simple method for reorganisation of States by Parliament, provided by Article 3, has fascinated observers. The question posed is why the States cannot be given a veto on reorganisation if India claims to be a federal republic. The Supreme Court remarked in a 2007 case that India was an “indestructible Union of destructible units”. Historians have attributed the justification for Article 3 to the peculiar circumstances prevailing at the time of Independence, with the princely states having not been fully integrated, and the demands for reorganising the States on linguistic basis posing a serious challenge to the nationhood.
Scholars of Indian federalism have marvelled at the “relatively consensual manner” in which most of the boundaries of the States in India have been redrawn since 1956. These scholars view Article 3 as the key to the survival of India as the world's largest multicultural, multinational democracy. According to them, this feature has allowed the majority at the Centre to respond to minority demands from the States for greater linguistic and cultural autonomy. Had India been a unitary state, “neither the majority, nor the minorities, would have had this constitutional flexibility available to them” (Alfred Stepan in Arguing Comparative Politics, New York, OUP, 2001).
According to another scholar, Maya Chadda, the reorganisation of three States in 2000 illustrated the value of the flexibility that the Constitution gives Parliament. The Constitution, she pointed out approvingly, said little about the kind of federal units the Indian Union was to have or the basis on which they would be created, that is, geography, demography, administrative convenience, language or culture. That decision was left entirely to the wisdom of Parliament.
Another observer, Paul Brass, has tried to delineate certain guidelines that the Centre has adopted over the years to consider the demands for the creation of new States.
These are (a) demands must stop short of secession; (b) demands based on language and culture could be accommodated, but not those based explicitly on religious differences; (c) demands must have clearly demonstrated public support; and (d) division of multilingual States must have some support from different linguistic groups.
To this list, one could perhaps add that if the demand is driven by the specific needs of the political economy of development, then it qualifies for due consideration by the Centre. The demand to split Uttar Pradesh into four States not only fulfils the four guidelines identified by Brass but could also be justified in terms of the suggested addition to it. It is assumed that the Uttar Pradesh Assembly resolution demonstrates the latent public support in the State for its four-way split. This assumption may, of course, be debatable.

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