Zee Media Bureau
New Delhi: Amidst the ongoing turmoil, the reconstituted group of ministers (GoM) held its first meeting on the decision by the central government to create a separate Telangana state out of Andhra Pradesh.
The full-fledged meeting of the GoM will, however, take place on October 19 as two ministers - Defence Minister AK Antony and Finance Minister P Chidambaram – were not present at today`s meeting.
After the meeting, Union Health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad said that there was no time-frame set for the reconstituted GoM to submit its report on Telangana, as against the six-week deadline envisaged earlier.
Giving the details, Azad said the GoM today discussed the basis parameters for creation of a separate state.
A press statement issued after the meeting said the GoM "would like to assure the people of Andhra Pradesh that their concerns would be addressed with fairness and objectivity".
The statement said the GoM also discussed "the approach and methodology to be adopted by it" and that the GoM "would take opinion of stakeholders on all important subjects while formulating its recommendations".
The GoM finalised different nodal ministries and departments of the central government which will prepare status reports to be submitted to the GoM on subjects in the terms of reference, the statement said.
"Information in this regard will be sought from the state government and the process will start immediately," it said.
The central government`s decision has instigated huge protests in Andhra Pradesh, which have affected normal life in the Seemandhra region of the state.
Besides Shinde, who heads the GoM, Antony, Chidambaram and Azad, Petroleum and Natural Gas Minister M Veerappa Moily and Rural Development Minister Jairam Ramesh are the part of the GoM. Minister of State for Personnel and Prime Minister`s Office, V Narayanasamy, is a special invitee on the panel.
The GoM was constituted on Tuesday.
The terms of reference for the GoM include determining the boundaries of the new state of Telangana and the residuary state of Andhra Pradesh with reference to the electoral constituencies, judicial and statutory bodies, and other administrative units.
It will also look at legal and administrative measures required to ensure that both the state governments can function efficiently from Hyderabad as the common capital for 10 years.
The GoM will take into account the legal, financial and administrative measures that may be required for transition to a new capital of Andhra Pradesh.
It would also discuss the special needs of the backward regions and districts of both the states and recommend measures.
Issues relating to law and order, safety and security of all residents and ensuring peace and harmony in all regions and districts consequent to the formation of the state of Telangana and the residuary state of Andhra Pradesh would also be discussed by the GoM.
Long-term internal security implications arising out of the move and making suitable recommendations are also part of the terms of reference of the GoM.
It would also look into sharing of river water, irrigation resources and other natural resources (especially coal, water, oil and gas) between the two states and also inter-se with other states, including the declaration of Polavaram Irrigation Project as a National Project.
The GoM on Telangana would also discuss issues related to power generation, transmission and distribution between the two states, besides issues arising on account of distribution of assets, public finance, public corporations and liabilities thereof between the two states.
Issues relating to the distribution of the employees in the subordinate as well as All India Services between the two states and issues arising out of the Presidential Order issued under Article 371D of the Constitution consequent to the bifurcation would also be looked into by the GoM.
It would also examine any other matter that may arise on account of bifurcation of the state of Andhra Pradesh and make suitable recommendations.
(With PTI nputs)