Andhra Pradesh chief minister Kiran Kumar Reddy is set to resign from the post soon after Lok Sabha takes up the Telangana bill for discussion on Tuesday. Andhra Congress sources told HT that Reddy has informed his confidants of the move.
“I will not preside over the bifurcation of AP,” he is learnt to have told his supporters. Reddy’s move comes in the backdrop of the government on Monday assuring the BJP of addressing its concerns on the bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh before taking up the highly contentious Telangana Bill for discussion in Lok Sabha.
The BJP, on its part, reiterated its unconditional support to the bill but asked the government to address its concerns including adequate compensation to Seemandhra and unbridled powers of the governor of the proposed states.
The government parleys came after Congress leaders from Seemandhra, including some ministers, met BJP veteran LK Advani demanding his party’s support to seek adequate financial compensation for rest of Andhra Pradesh post bifurcation. “We are in favour of Telangana but cannot disregard problems that will arise for Seemandhra,” Advani said.
“The Telangana bill will come up for discussion in the Lok Sabha on Tuesday, parliamentary affairs minister Kamal Nath said, adding, “Those who want to oppose can do so in a parliamentary manner.” Congress president Sonia Gandhi, who is keen to see the passage of the bill in both houses of Parliament in next two days, is likely to speak on the bill. She also had chance interaction with BJP leader M Venkaiah Naidu in Parliament during which she asked him if the BJP had changed its stand on Telangana.
She also deputed Union home minister Sushilkumar Shinde and rural development minister Jairam Ramesh to discuss and address issues raised by the BJP. The two ministers held closed door meetings with BJP leaders LK Advani, Sushma Swaraj, Arun Jaitley and M Venkaiah Naidu.
Jaitley pointed out that provisions relating to powers of governor in matters relating to protection of residents of Hyderabad — common capital for both states — as mentioned in the Telangana bill, can’t stand judicial scrutiny.
BJP leaders felt the bill that says the decision of the governor would be final in such matters, violates Article 163 of the Constitution. Governors are supposed to act on the aid and advice of the council of ministers.