Panels to study 3 capital bills caught in row in Andhra Pradesh
An official familiar with the development said legislature secretary P Balakrishnamacharyulu returned the file of the council chairman stating that the orders seeking to constitute the select committees could not be complied with as they were not in tune with the laid down procedures.Updated: Feb 10, 2020 22:23 IST
The constitution of select committees of the Andhra Pradesh state legislative council to look into two crucial bills pertaining to formation of three capitals for the state is snowballing into a controversy, with the legislature secretariat on Monday rejecting the orders of council chairman Mohd Ahmed Shariff.
An official familiar with the development said legislature secretary P Balakrishnamacharyulu returned the file of the council chairman stating that the orders seeking to constitute the select committees could not be complied with as they were not in tune with the laid down procedures.
“The formation of select committees do not fit into the norms under Section 154 of the Business Rules of the legislature as no motion was moved in the council and no opinions of the members was taken as per the procedure,” the secretary wrote to the chairman.
Balakrishnamacharyulu refused to comment on the development and the council chairman could not be reached for his reaction.
However, Telugu Desam Party member in the legislative council and one of the members of the select committee Paruchuri Ashok Babu said the legislative secretariat had returned the file and the council chairman was looking into the legal position in this regard.
“The chairman has every right to constitute the select committees as per his discretion and he is the ultimate authority. The officials cannot overrule the order. It amounts to breach of privilege and contempt of the House,” Ashok Babu said.
He reminded that state advocate general Sriram Subrahmanyam himself had submitted in the high court that the bills were pending with the select committee. “How can the government go back from its stand now?” the TDP MLC asked.
In the afternoon, the members of the TDP, Bharatiya Janata Party and Progressive Democratic Front met legislature secretary P Balakrishnamacharyulu and demanded that the committees be constituted since the chairman has the discretionary powers to do so.
The two bills – AP Decentralisation and Inclusive Development of All Regions Bill, 2020 seeking to constitute three capitals for the state, and the AP Capital Region Development Act (Repeal) Bill were passed in the state assembly on January 20.
However, they were stalled in the legislative council and after a debate, the council chairman referred them to the select committees using his discretionary powers. Subsequently, the Jagan government moved a resolution in the state assembly on January 27 seeking to abolish the legislative council and it was adopted unanimously.
Meanwhile, legisalative council chairman asked the political parties in the council to suggest names for the two select committees to look into two different bills. Except YSRC, the other political parties sent the names of their representatives to the council chairman which announced the formation of committees.
The YSRC, however, has announced that as far as the government is concerned, the legislative council stood abolished. YSRC floor leader in the council and minister Pilli Subhash Chandra Bose and party MLC Ummareddy Venkateshwarlu wrote a letter to the state legislature secretary P Balakrishnamacharyulu stating that the YSRC cannot send its names for the select committee, which was constituted against the rules and without following any procedure.
YSRC leader and advisor (public affairs) to the state government Sajjala Ramakrishna Reddy said there was no sanctity to the select committee which the legislative council chairman announced without following any rules. “Our party doesn’t acknowledge the select committee at all. So, how can we suggest the names of our members to the committee that doesn’t exist at all?” he asked.