The Gentlemen’s agreement of Andhra Pradesh (1956) refers to the agreement that was signed between the leaders of Telangana and Andhra before the formation of the State of Andhra Pradesh in 1956. The agreement sought to address the fears of the people of Telangana by providing safeguards to the people of Telangana. The alleged violations of this agreement led to the 1969 Telangana movement and are cited as one of the main reasons for demands for separate statehood for Telangana.
The Gentlemen’s Agreement was signed on February 20 1956 at the Hyderabad House in Delhi.
Four prominent leaders each, from Telangana and Andhra signed the agreement.
Telangana Leaders Andhra Leaders
1.Burgula Ramakrishna Rao 1.Bejawada Gopala Reddy
2.KV Ranga Reddy 2.Neelam Sanjeeva Reddy
3.Marri Chenna Reddy 3.Sardar Gouthu Latchanna
4.JV Narsing Rao 4. Alluri Satyanarayana Raju.
The Gentlemen’s Agreement consisted of the following fourteen points:
- The centralised and general administration expenditure of Telangana and Andhra areas must be distributed on the basis of territory and population. The surplus income from Telangana must be reserved for the development of Telangana region only.
- Students from Telangana must be given opportunities in the educational institutions of the region. Admissions into technical institutions in Telangana region must be restricted for students from Telangana only. If this is not possible 1/3rd of the total admissions in all educational institutions across the state must be reserved for Telangana students.
- Urdu must continue in the Administration & Judiciary for the next 5 years after which the situation will be reviewed by the Regional council. There should not be any condition of compulsory knowledge in Telugu as a qualification for government jobs. However, a proficiency test can be conducted in Telugu after 2 years of appointment.
- A Regional Council must be constituted for the overall development of the Telangana region.
- Composition of Regional council:
The Regional Council shall comprise of 20 members –
-legislators representing the nine districts of Telangana
-legislators (MPs or MLAs from Telangana Region) elected by the MLAs belonging to Telangana region
-5 non-legislative co-opted members
The CM or Deputy CM, whoever is from Telangana will head the Council and the Cabinet Ministers from Telangana will be special invites.
- The Regional Council must be a constitutional body and it must have decision making powers on the following matters:
- a) Development and economic planning
- b) Local self – government with regard to Municipal Corporations, Development trusts, District Boards and District Authorities
- c) Public Health sanitation, hospitals and dispensaries
- d) Primary and Secondary education.
- e) Regulation of Admissions to Educational institutions in the Telangana region.
- f) Prohibition on sale of Agricultural lands
- g) Cottage and small scale industries
- h) Agricultural Co-operative societies, markets and fairs
- Advice tendered by the Regional committee will normally be accepted by the Government and the State Legislature. In case of difference of opinion between the Regional Council and the government, the matter will be referred to the Governor whose decision will be final.
- The CM or the Deputy CM must be from Telangana region and two out of the following five Ministries must be allocated to Telangana Ministers.
- Planning and Development
- Commerce and Industries
- The Ratio of Ministers in the Council of Ministers must be 60:40 from Andhra and Telangana regions respectively. In the 40% allocated to Telangana there should be one Muslim member.
- Domicile Rules: Telangana region is regarded as a single unit as far as recruitment to sub-ordinate services is concerned. Post in this cadre shall be reserved for persons who satisfy the Domicile conditions as prescribed under the existing Hyderabad Mulki rules
- Retrenchment (removal) from service should be proportionate from both the regions if it is inevitable due to integration of the two regions
- The sale of Agricultural land in Telangana region must be under the control Regional council.
- Future recruitment to Public service should be based on the population of the two regions.
- The HPCC should be continued up to the end of 1962.
It was also agreed that the provisions of this agreement will be reviewed after 10 years. However the leaders could not reach an agreement on the following two issues which do not find a mention in the agreement.
While Telangana people proposed the name of the State as “Andhra Telangana State” the Andhra Pradesh.
The Telangana Leaders proposed that the High court of the State should be located in Hyderabad and a bench should be constituted in Guntur. However the Andhra representatives proposed that HC can be established in Hyderabad and there was no need for a bench in Guntur.
The Central Government on 10th August 1956 introduced a note on the safeguards proposed for Telangana area in the Parliament.