The Supreme Court will hear on Friday a batch of petitions challenging the Centre’s move to introduce in Parliament the Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Bill for creation of Telangana.

A Bench headed by Justice H.L. Dattu will hear the petitions filed by L. Payyavulu Keshav, Telugu Desam Party MLA, and several others. The Andhra Pradesh Legislature rejected the Bill.

The petitioners said the process of bifurcation of the State into Telangana and Andhra Pradesh was unconstitutional as it was in violation of the principle of federalism. The introduction of the Bill would jeopardise the interests, life and liberty of the entire nine crore people in the State and the interests of the other States.

The petitioners said any further move to create Telangana would cause irreparable damage. They pointed out that no political party, with the exception of the Telangana Rashtra Samiti, had given explicit consent for including Hyderabad in Telangana.

The coastal districts of Rayalaseema felt they were being subjected to deception as Hyderabad was proposed to be made a part of Telangana with no rights for the people of other areas over the city.

The petitions raised important questions of law. Among them are “whether Parliament can enact a law such as the Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Bill after the same was rejected by the Andhra Pradesh Legislature — the Assembly and the Council — when there are no guidelines in the Constitution regarding the formation or bifurcation of a State; whether non-consideration of the report of the Justice Srikrishna Committee as part of the process of bifurcation is not per se arbitrary and in breach of federal principles; whether the Bill is not invalid on the ground that it does not contain the statement of objects and reasons and a financial memorandum; and whether it is not incumbent on the Union government to mention the reason why the Bill is being brought in.”

“When there is no material indicating the backwardness of the Telangana region, could the creation of a separate State, only to satisfy the sentiments of the people, be a valid constitutional reason for bifurcation of the State under Article 3 of the Constitution. Is not the proposal to form a new State arbitrary when there is no material indicating any justification for the bifurcation?”