Andhra Pradesh

Assembly session begins Monday, govt. to take up three capitals proposal

High power panel report likely to be tabled; Jagan holds preparatory meet

The Andhra Pradesh Legislative Assembly session will begin at 11 a.m. on Monday and a decision on the State government’s plans to develop three capitals for “equitable and comprehensive development” is likely to be taken during the session. The government proposes to shift the Executive capital to Visakhapatnam from Amaravati and the High Court to Kurnool.

The government is expected to table the High Power Committee (HPC) report and its findings before the Assembly for discussion.

The HPC was appointed to study the report of the expert committee headed by former civil servant G. N. Rao and that of Boston Consulting Group (BCG).

Chief Minister Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy held a preparatory meeting at his camp office on Sunday to chalk out a strategy to be adopted to get the Bills related to the three capitals’ proposal passed. The details of the meeting have not been disclosed.

No clear indication

It is not clear whether the government will present the Bills or make a statement on its proposals to develop three capitals.

In view of the heightened agitation against the proposal to shift the capital, the government may also come up with a Bill/ statement on Regional Development Boards. The officials and Ministers are tight-lipped in this regard.

The government has reportedly contemplated presenting Bills related to the abolition of the A.P. Capital Region Development Authority (CRDA) and the proposal to develop three capitals, decentralisation of administration and development, in the Legislative Assembly.

Governor’s assent

But the Governor’s assent is mandatory if the Bill to repeal the CRDA Act is introduced. It may be a difficult task for the government to obtain the Governor’s nod and present the Bill on the first day of the session as the Governor “can seek legal opinion”.

If the CRDA is scrapped, the rules, notifications and Government Orders issued under the CRDA Act, which sought to develop some 33,000 acres in the capital region of Amaravati, will cease to exist. It will pave the way for shifting the capital. The CRDA Act specified a capital region for the State and shifting of the capital might not be possible unless the Act is repealed.

English medium

The Education Bill 1/1982-(Amendment Act) 2019, which enables English to be introduced as the medium of instruction in all government schools with Telugu as a compulsory subject, is also likely to be introduced during the session.

The Bill, which was passed by a voice vote in the Assembly in the previous session, was not approved in the Council, which sent it back to the Assembly with a few amendments to it.

Though it will be a cakewalk for the ruling YSR Congress Party to get the approval of the Assembly, it will be a Herculean task for the treasury benches to get the nod of the Council as the Opposition TDP has the upper hand in the House.

Though the YSRCP has an absolute majority in the Assembly (151 MLAs out of total 175), the Opposition TDP has 28 members in the 58-member Council (YSRCP has only nine MLCs).

A session of the Legislative Council will be held on January 21.

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Printable version | Feb 26, 2020 4:14:32 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/andhra-pradesh/assembly-session-begins-monday-govt-to-take-up-three-capitals-proposal/article30601444.ece

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