Five days ahead of the formal bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh into separate state of Telangana and Andhra Pradesh, President Pranab Mukherjee has appointed E.S.L. Narasimhan, Governor of Andhra Pradesh, to discharge the functions of the Governor of Telangana, in addition to his own duties until a `permanent arrangement’ is made. A communiqué from the Rashtrapati Bhawan said that the above appointment will take effect from the date he assumes charge of his office.

Though the communiqué states that Mr. Narasimhan has been appointed to discharge functions of Governor of Telangana `until a permanent arrangement’ is made, the Act under which Andhra Pradesh is being bifurcated envisages a common Governor for a period to be `determined’ by the President.

The arrangement is necessitated for at least two reasons. Despite the bifurcation the linkages between the two states is likely to continue for several years as Hyderabad (which was the bone of contention) would be their common capital for maximum period of 10 years to enable Andhra Pradesh to build its own capital. There is no precedent of this kind any where else in the country. Secondly, the arrangement is meant to address the apprehensions of people of Seemandhra settled in the twin cities of Hyderabad and Secunderabad about their safety. Though there is no precise estimate of the number of people from Seemandhra, it is estimated to be a big number.

The Act clearly specifies that the Governor shall have special responsibility for the security of life, liberty and property of all those who reside in twin cities of Hyderabad and Secundrabad. Hyderabad shall also be the common High Court for the State of Telangana and the State of Andhra Pradesh till a separate High Court for the State of Andhra Pradesh is established.