Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation act
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This article is written by Seep Gupta, from the Institute of Law, Jiwaji University. This is an exhaustive article which deals with the Study on the Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Act 2014.

Introduction

The Telangana Act 2014 or Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Act, 2014 is an Act of the parliament which was passed by the legislature to bifurcate the state of Andhra Pradesh into Telangana and rest of the state of Andhra Pradesh. It received the assent of the President on 1st March 2014. Earlier, version of this was brought into 2013 and it was rejected by the Andhra Pradesh Legislative Assembly. After the commencement of this Act, a new state Telangana came into existence with ten districts.

The official formation of the 2 states was done on 2nd June 2014. This Act divided all the assets, liabilities, boundaries and contracts between the two successor states. 

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Overview and historical background

History

After several years of protests and agitation and after the huge demand for a new state that was raised from the Telangana movement, the Central Government, under the United Progressive Alliance government, finally decided to separate and to bifurcate the State of Andhra Pradesh into Telangana and the rest of Andhra Pradesh.

Telangana Movement was a movement in which the demand for the separate state of Telangana had arisen. It has a long history behind it. The Telangana region comprises Telugu speaking part of the princely state of Hyderabad. It lies near the Deccan plateau and is the hub of the mainland rivers such as the Krishna and Godavari. These rivers were the heart of many dynasties for many years. When the Muslim invaders formed the princely state of Hyderabad in the 18th century and during the British rule, Britishers merged and successfully conquered the princely state of Hyderabad through subsidiary alliance. 

Telangana was never part of the British Empire. When India became independent the princely state of Hyderabad under Nizam rule was merged inside the Indian territory based on the instrument of accession. Meanwhile, the Telugu speaking region was carved out completely from the Madras State. The States Reorganisation Committee in 1953 which was appointed by the Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru who was the then Prime Minister of India to separate Telangana and form it into a new state but later Nehru had to give up his idea after the brutal revolutionary movement in Hyderabad.

In 1969, the demand for Telangana was again raised by constant protests by students and government employees but it was later suppressed after a short period. After the rise of the Telugu Desam Party, the demand for Telangana again gained media attention. In October 2008, Telugu Desam Party supported the demand of separate state Telangana.

Overview of the Bill

In 2013, the Union cabinet formed the group of ministers led by S.K. Shinde to review the conditions of Andhra Pradesh and to review the suitable conditions for the bifurcation of the state of Andhra Pradesh. This committee included P. Chidambaram and Ghulam Nabi Azad who were the Finance Minister and Health Minister respectively at that time. The Committee also took Shri. Krishna’s Committee’s views too which were based on reviewing and consulting the conditions that were prevalent in Andhra Pradesh. 

After so much of protests from the oppositions finally, the bill to carve the new state of Telangana from the state of Andhra Pradesh was passed by Meira Kumar in Feb 2013 in the Lok Sabha who was the then Lok Sabha speaker. The bill was opposed by the many MPs from the non-Telangana areas and it received lots of flak and criticism from the Anti-Telangana protestors.

Telangana Bill was passed in the Lok Sabha on 18th February 2014. The opposition leaders described it as the “Black Day” for the Indian Parliament. It was passed by the Rajya but the Rajya Sabha later rejected it, so then it was passed by the voice vote. 

It received the assent of the President and then it got published in the official gazette. New state i.e. 29th state came into existence from the appointed date by the Central Government. The Telangana will consist of the ten districts and Hyderabad will be the capital of both the Telangana and the rest of Andhra Pradesh. 

There will be a common High Court for both the successor States on the population ratio and costs will be divided among them until the new court will be set up in the residuary state of Andhra Pradesh under Article 214 of the Indian Constitution. The Public Service Commission which is in existence now will be for the residuary State of Andhra Pradesh and after the approval of the President, the Union Public Service Commission will act as the Public Service Commission for the newly formed State of Telangana. The board after the commencement of the Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Bill will constitute a separate Krishna River Management Board and Godavari River Management Board for the working and management of dams, rivers and reservoirs. These Boards will decide the new projects and dams to be constructed on the rivers and will give them technical clearance. The sharing of river water between both successor states will be done. 

It’s the responsibility of the government to protect life, peace and liberty and to maintain the law and order in the common capital of Telangana. It’s the responsibility of the government to see all the functions are carefully being discharged in the common capital of Hyderabad. This provision will cease after 10 years and the government will decide the new capital for Andhra Pradesh. 

The Greyhound training centre, which has been situated in the central city of Hyderabad, will act as a common training centre for three years for both the newly formed state of Telangana and the residuary state of Andhra Pradesh.

Allocations such as allocations of coal, natural gas, and other things will be done to the newly formed state of Telangana according to the guidelines, strategies, and policies of the state government. 

The Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh Chandrababu Naidu stated in the Andhra Pradesh legislative assembly in September 2014 that the new capital of the state of Andhra Pradesh will be Amravati. 

Salient features and objectives

The Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Bill, 2014 or Telangana Act, 2014 contains 108 Sections in twelve parts and thirteen Schedules. To represent the Anglo-Indian, community one member will be nominated by the Governor in the legislative assemblies of both of the successor states. 

The State of Andhra Pradesh will consist of all of those districts which will cease to be the districts of Telangana and except those of the districts which are specified in the Schedule. 

After the Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Act came into force, a new state named Telangana was added to the list number 29, which was earlier 28. Now, there are 29 states in India. This amendment is being made to the First Schedule of the Indian Constitution. Now, there will be 17 members to the council of state of Andhra Pradesh and 11 members in the house of people of Andhra Pradesh. Earlier, there were 18 and 25 sitting members in the council of states and houses of people respectively. This amendment is made to the Fourth Schedule of the Indian Constitution.

The number of seats in the legislative assembly of Telangana will be 119 and the number of seats in the legislative assembly of Andhra Pradesh will be 175. 

The Governor under Article 333 of the Indian Constitution will nominate one member from each successive state to the legislative assemblies to represent the Anglo-Indian community of India. 

The number of seats in the legislative assembly in the State of Andhra Pradesh has increased from 175 to 225 and in the State of Telangana from 119 to 153 keeping in mind the provisions of Article 170 of the Indian Constitution, and Section 15 of the Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Act 2014

Under the provisions mentioned in Article 169 of the Indian Constitution, legislative councils will be constituted for both the State of Andhra Pradesh and the State of Telangana. Total members in the legislative council shall be 50 and 40 respectively. 

Any advocate who is practising in the High Court of the Hyderabad before the appointed date and is an advocate there, after the bifurcation he can transfer his name and can give his option in writing within the one year from the date of the Bar Council of such existing state, he can transfer his name from the High Court of the Hyderabad to the High Court of Telangana not affecting any of the provisions mentioned in the Advocates Act, 1961.

Revenue and other financial related aspects shall be distributed between the two successor states based on population ratio and other criteria. This was mentioned in the thirteenth Financial Commission. In the fourteenth finance commission of India, the President of India said that the separate awards should be made for both of the successor states. 

The common admission procedure will follow up for both of the successor states for the transitionary period of 10 years. Admission quota will apply to both the private, state, aided or unaided institutions and equal opportunities will be given to the students belonging to both of the states and no discrimination will be tolerated against the students belonging to both of the states.

The successor states will be entitled to benefits and will be liable to bear all the costs and expenses resulting from the decisions taken by the State of Andhra Pradesh.

In case of any difficulty or hurdle, the President of India may order or do anything that should not be inconsistent with the provisions and principles are given in this Act i.e. the Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Act, 2014. Also, one thing is to be noted that every order made under this Section shall mandatorily be presented in each house of the Parliament. 

Amendments

The Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Amendment Bill, 2015 was presented in 2015 by the minister of Home Affairs, Mr Rajnath Singh before the Parliament. It seeks to amend the Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Act 2014.

This bill was successfully passed in the Lok Sabha on 17th March 2015 and in the Rajya Sabha on 20th March 2015. The Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Act, 2014 provides for the bifurcation of the state of Andhra Pradesh and also provide for separate legislative assemblies, the council of states, distribution of case and credits, finance and revenue distribution, representation of successor states in Parliament, creation of separate cadres in Administrative services, creation of new water resources and dams over the rivers and other things. 

This bill seeks to make certain changes in the provisions of the present Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Act 2014. Currently, the members of the Legislative Councils of Andhra Pradesh shall be elected from different backgrounds. In keeping with the provisions mentioned in the Indian Constitution, these members should not exceed more than 50. 

But Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Amendment bill, 2015 seeks to amend the present provisions by increasing the strength of members from 50 to 58 members. Also, this bill seeks to increase the number by 20 from 17 of the members elected from municipalities and local boards. The same goes for the members elected for legislative assemblies. This bill seeks to increase the maximum number of members shall be appointed by the Governor from 6 to 8. Other provisions are given in the Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Act, 2014 remain unaffected and will not be changed by the bill. No amendments shall be made to them. 

Conclusion

This is a brief overview, history and objective of the Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Act 2014. This Act resulted in an entirely different state i.e. 29th Indian State. This act resulted in changing various Schedules and Articles of the Indian Constitution. Only the future can decide the improvement in the Act and the state of the newly formed state of Telangana.

References


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