Telangana Government’s New Emblem Move to Remove Charminar Kicks Up Row, BRS to Launch Protest

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HYDERABAD — In the run-up to the 10th Formation Day celebrations of Telangana, a row has erupted over the state government’s move to adopt a new state emblem, with the main Opposition Bharat Rashtra Samithi (BRS) threatening to launch a movement.

On state formation day on June 2, the Congress government plans to unveil the new emblem as it says that the present emblem carrying Kakatiya Kala Thoranam (welcome arch of the Kakatiyas) and Charminar reflect feudalism and autocratic rule and CM Reddy wants the new emblem to reflect the decades-long struggle for Telangana state.

CM Reddy and Deputy Chief Minister Mallu Bhatti Vikramarka have given final touches to the new emblem being designed by artist Rudra Rajesham.

CM Reddy has also roped in Oscar-winning music composer MM Keeravani to compose music for the state song which will also be released on June 2.

The government adopted Ande Sri’s ‘Jaya Jaya He Telangana’ as the state anthem.

CM Reddy is scheduled to hold a meeting with leaders of all political parties to brief them on the new logo and state song.

However, the BRS is likely to stay away from the meeting and the party has threatened to launch a movement if the government changes the emblem.

Day after BRS leaders led by former MP B. Vinod Kumar staged a protest at Kakatiya Thoranam in Warangal, party Working President KT Rama Rao planned a similar demonstration at Charminar on Thursday.

However, the government refused to give permission for the protest.

“World over, Charminar has been the icon/symbol of Hyderabad for centuries. When one thinks of Hyderabad, they cannot but think of Charminar which has all the qualities of a UNESCO world heritage site. Now the Congress Government wants to remove the iconic Charminar from the state logo citing frivolous reasons. What a shame,” Rama Rao posted on X.

He also stated that the protest at Kakatiya Kala Thoranam was just the beginning and BRS would proceed legally. He questioned the government’s decision saying people have not given power to Congress to change the emblem.

“Kakatiya Kala Thoranam and Charminar are not the signs of imperialism. They are symbols of development, people’s welfare and historical and archaeological significance of the region,” he said.

He also argued that a change of state emblem would require the approval of the Ministry of Home Affairs.

Vinod Kumar also appealed to AICC leader Sonia Gandhi to ask CM Reddy to desist from it as this would set a bad precedent.

The BRS leader also accused CM Reddy of trying to destroy the history of Telangana saying he was a strong votary of a combined state.

“He was for Samaikya Andhra Pradesh. He never raised the Jai Telangana slogan either during the statehood movement or after the state’s formation,” the BRS leader said.

Disagreeing with Revanth Reddy that Kakatiya Kala Thoranam is a symbol of imperialism, he explained that Kakatiya rulers were from the backward communities of the society and they built ‘thrikuta’ temples and constructed tanks and lakes including the chain-link tank system for meeting the drinking water and irrigation needs.

He pointed out that this system is serving its purpose even 800 years after their rule. Vinod Kumar said the Chief Minister should focus on fulfilling the long list of pre-poll promises instead of unproductive actions such as changing the state emblem.

The new emblem will replace the one adopted in 2014 when Telangana came into being as the 29th state. The Congress government, which came to power in December 2023, decided to replace the existing emblem which depicts Kakatiya Kala Thoranam and Charminar, the symbols of Kakatiya and Qutb Shahi dynasties. Change of emblem was one of the key decisions taken by the Congress government, reversing the decisions of the previous BRS government.

It replaced ‘TS’ with ‘TG’ as the state abbreviation. The earlier BRS government had adopted ‘TS’ as the abbreviation.

The new government also decided to change Telangana Talli statue to reflect the sentiments of Telangana people. -IANS

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