Amarvati: A special session of Andhra Pradesh Assembly on Monday is expected to seal the fate of Amaravati as the State capital.
The session is likely to pass a resolution for decentralisation of the State capital by shifting some key capital functions from Amaravati to Visakhapatnam and Kurnool.
The YSR Congress government proposes to shift the State Secretariat and the Chief Minister’s office to Visakhapatnam and the High Court to Kurnool. Ignoring the protest by the opposition parties and the farmers, who had given 33,000 acres of land for development of Amaravati as the State capital in 2015, the Jaganmohan Reddy government was going ahead with the proposal.
Before the Assembly session, a State Cabinet meeting will be held to approve the recommendations of high-power committee and the Bill and the resolution to be tabled in the Assembly.
The high-power committee, comprising ministers and senior bureaucrats, analysed the reports of an experts’ panel and the Boston Consultancy Group (BCG). Both the panels had favoured decentralisation of the State capital.
The government is maintaining secrecy about the Bill and resolution to be tabled in the Assembly. The government plans to repeal the Andhra Pradesh Capital Region Development Authority (CRDA) Act, 2014. All the Rules, notifications and Government Orders issued under the CRDA Act, which sought to develop some 33,000 acres in the capital region of Amaravati, would cease to exist.
The areas covered under the CRDA would be vested with the VGTM (Vijaywada-Guntur-Tenali-Mangalagiri) Urban Development Authority. The government may also announce a package to compensate the farmers who may suffer lossess.
Elaborate security arrangements were being made for the Assembly session. Police was maintaining tight vigil in all 29 villages where farmers have been staging protest for last 33 days.
The main opposition Telugu Desam Party (TDP) called for ‘chalo Assembly’ to oppose any move to shift the State capital.
The TDP Legislature Party on Sunday held a meeting to chalk out its strategy during the session. Leader of Opposition N Chandrababu Naidu discussed the startegy with the party MLAs. Amaravati was the brainchild of Naidu, who lost power to the YSRC in May last year.
The new government alleged that Naidu and other TDP leaders had resorted to insider trading in development of Amaravati and the whole project was designed to benefit a particular caste.
Naidu rubbished the allegations and accused Jagan of killing a golden goose for the State by destroying Amaravati.