Jagan Reddy’s 3-capital plan for Andhra put on hold till October 5
The YS Jagan Mohan Reddy government’s plan of creating three capitals for the state continues to hang in balance with the Andhra Pradesh high court on Monday extending the status quo on continuing Amaravati as the state capital.
A division bench of the high court comprising chief justice JK Maheshwari and judges M Satyanarayana Murthy and AV Sesha Sai was acting on a batch of nearly 93 petitions including that of Amaravati Rythu Parirakshana Vedika (Amaravat farmers’ protection forum) and former Telugu Desam Party MLA Sravan Kumar.
The bench said it would take up hearing of the petitions from October 5.
“Till such time, the status quo on Amaravati capital issue will continue,” the high court bench said.
Advocates for petitioners requested that the petitions be heard in person, rather than through video conferencing mode. The high court said it would take a call on October 5.
The petitioners were opposing the formation of three capitals – executive capital at Visakhapatnam, judicial capital at Kurnool and legislative capital at Amaravati.
They moved the high court challenging the acts passed by the state legislature to this effect in June, besides the legal sanctity of the GN Rao committee and high power committee based on which the state government decided on three capitals.
The petitioners questioned the violation of agreement made by AP Capital Region Development Authority (APCRDA) with the farmers, deviation of master plan in the state capital region and lack of creation of infrastructure facilities in the region.
The Union home ministry, which was made a respondent in the case, had already submitted an affidavit in the court that there was no provision in the AP Reorganisation Act, 2014, that prevents the Jagan government to go ahead with the three capitals plan.
The MHA refused to intervene in the matter, as location or relocation of the state capital is the sole prerogative of the state government.
The high court also took objection to the construction of a state guest house in 30 acres of land at Kapuluppada in Visakhapatnam despite the status quo order on the capital shift. The petitioners argued that it amounted to contempt of court.
The state government, however, claimed that the construction of the guest house had nothing to do with the capital shift. The high court ordered that the government submit its counter within a week.