In a big development, the Andhra Pradesh government moved the Supreme Court, seeking vacation of the High Court’s stay order on the three-capital law. On August 4, the Andhra Pradesh HC had asked the state government to file a counter-affidavit to the petitions challenging the AP Decentralisation and Inclusive Development of All Regions Bill 2020 and the repeal of the AP Capital Region Development Authority Act 2014. Moreover, the HC directed the YS Jagan Mohan Reddy-led government to maintain the status quo until the next hearing on August 14.
Already, aggrieved farmers and the Amaravati Parirakshana Samiti have filed caveat petitions in the apex court. The AP government has challenged the HC order on technical grounds, mentioning that the bills were approved by the legislature and received theassent ofGovernor Biswabhusan Harichandan on July 31. While the two bills wereoriginally passed by the AP Assembly on January 20, the Legislative Council where the TDP has a majority referred them to a select committee. The matter is likely to be heard by the SC on August 10.
Visakhapatnam, Amaravati, and Kurnool shall become the administrative, legislative, and judicial capital of the state respectively owing to the AP Decentralisation and Inclusive Development of All Regions Bill 2020. This bill divides the state into different zones. Each zone will be governed by a Board that will comprise the CM, a Vice-Chairman, at least one MP, two MLAs, and 4 other members to be nominated by the state government.
There will be a full-time Secretary of the Board who will be an officer of the rank of a Principal Secretary and above. The Andhra Pradesh government shall notify the location of each Board and the departments that could be located in any zone. Simultaneously, the government also repealed the AP Capital Region Development Authority Act, 2014. This legislation was enacted on December 22, 2014, for the development of the state post-bifurcation with a specific area demarcated as the capital. However, as the passage of the AP Decentralisation Bill renders the aforesaid Act virtually redundant, it was necessary to repeal it.