YSR Congress urges President to stall Andhra Pradesh`s bifurcation

YSR Congress party urged President Pranab Mukherjee to stall bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh, saying the move by the central government is undemocratic.

Hyderabad: YSR Congress party on Thursday urged President Pranab Mukherjee to stall bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh, saying the move by the central government is undemocratic and in total disregard of the majority view of the state legislature.

A delegation of party leaders led by party chief YS Jaganmohan Reddy submitted a memorandum to Mukherjee at the Rashtrapati Nilayam here, where the president is on southern sojourn.

The party`s three MPs including Jaganmohan Reddy, 29 state legislators and 15 other former legislators submitted affidavits to the President opposing the bill for formation of separate Telangana state.
They alleged that Andhra Pradesh Re-organization Bill 2013 was prepared in great haste and sent to the state legislature for offering their views without even mentioning the objects and reasons for the bill and without providing any background information on any of the important issues

"This clearly shows that the union government does not want any informed discussion and debate on various issues that directly impact the lives of over 8.4 crore people of the state," said the letter submitted to the President.

The bill approved by the Union Cabinet was referred to the state assembly by the President on December 12 to seek its opinion by January 23. The bill is likely to come up for debate from January 03.

The affidavits submitted to the president reminded him that his powers were not unfettered and absolute.

"That I further state that as per the decision of Supreme Court in S.R.Bommai v. Union of India, (1994) 3 SCC 1, the power of the President is only a conditional power and its exercise must be based on relevant material and in accordance with a rational policy and is not in any case an unfettered and absolute power," said the affidavits.
In his third meeting with the President on the same issue during last couple of months, Jaganmohan Reddy told him that majority of the legislators were opposed to bifurcation.

The letter said the central government`s move was in complete disregard to the prevailing conventions and practices which require it to initiate action under Article 3 of the Constitution (for creation of new states) only upon receiving a request from the state assembly by way of a resolution or on the basis of recommendation of a commission or a committee constituted exclusively for that purpose.

It pointed out that the government did not obtain the resolution of the state assembly as was done in case of creation of Uttarakhand, Jharkhand and Chhattisgarh states.

It said the move was against the recommendations of the Justice Srikrishna Committee, which suggested that the best among available options was to keep the state united.