Give them their States

States are an artificial creation by us to help us govern better. Large countries need several leaders and a collective decision process that involves more than a handful of people. India is a nation of over a billion people, and the organization of our states is based largely on our colonial governance, with further states being carved out on the recommendations of theĀ states re-organisation commission in 1956. Since then, in the last 56 years, our population has tripled and significant growth and alleviation of poverty has taken place.

Large sections of our community are deprived, and with politicians only catering to their vote bank, regions which contribute lower number of elected representatives either to the state legislature or the parliament are at a disadvantage. It is probable, that the demand for the creation of new states is being fueled by political ambition of a few. However, these few are the elected representatives of the people of the region demanding the new state and political ambitions of individuals are thwarted in the long term by poor performance in office.

The agitation for Telangana has shown that while one may delay the declaration of new states in regions where the people want them, it can not be indefinitely denied. The current state of Assam with its widespread anti-state violence for a new state indicates a degree of wide-spread anger in the community present there. With so many people in distress, being adamant does not solve the problem. One must acknowledge, that a pro-active government which addresses the needs of all its constituents would not have people demanding new states. The government must acknowledge both the failure of some states to effectively address the needs of all its constituents, and the importance of smaller states for effective governance, and thereby grant new state privileges in regions where agitations exist or must setup a second States Reorganization commission to proceed with the further division of states. Else, a new law needs to be enacted to ensure effective utilization of state revenue in all areas of the state, especially in those areas requiring greater development, and thus bridge the vast inequality gaps present in different regions of a single state.

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