Millennium Post

Joy in Telangana as Lok Sabha passes bill to divide AP

Joy in Telangana as Lok Sabha passes bill to divide AP
The Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Bill was passed by voice vote in the face of noisy protests by MPs from Seemandhra - as the other two regions (Rayalseema and coastal Andhra) are collectively known - as well as a section of the opposition parties.

The passage of the bill, moved by home minister Sushil Kumar Shinde, took a total of 90 minutes.
If the bill also gets the approval of Rajya Sabha, the Telugu-speaking people will have two states with Telangana becoming India’s 29th state.

Telangana will have 10 districts including Hyderabad, which will serve as a common capital for a period not exceeding 10 years. The residuary state of Andhra Pradesh will have 13 districts.

In a move to assure protection to Seemandhra people living in Hyderabad, the bill proposed that common governor of the two states will have power of maintaining law and order in the city, but ignored the demand from Seemandhra leaders that the city be declared a union territory.

The bill, when passed by Rajya Sabha, will bring curtains on Andhra Pradesh, which came into existence in 1956 with the merger of Telangana, then known as Hyderabad State with Andhra State, which was earlier carved out of Madras state.

With an area of 1.14 lakh square kim and a population of 3.52 crore, Telangana will be 12th largest state in terms of both area and population.

The bill was passed amid dramatic scenes. Those opposing the bill massed near Speaker Meira Kumar, some shouting slogans and others holding placards. But they were simply ignored as amendments to the bills were taken up and then the bill was finally declared passed by the lower house.

So high were the tempers in the house that a group of Congress members from Andhra Pradesh stood near Shinde as he read out the clauses in a bid to protect him from anti-Telangana MPs.

Congress president Sonia Gandhi watched the proceedings with visible dismay. Prime Minister Manmohan Singh was not present.

Participating in the debate, Leader of Opposition Sushma Swaraj said her BJP supported the creation of Telangana but not the way it was being done.

‘I and my party support the bill...Telangana should be formed...We rise to prove our credibility and to see wishes of youth of Telangana are fulfilled,’ she said, accusing the Congress of delaying the process.

Science and technology minister S Jaipal Reddy said the demand for separate Telangana was raised for last 60 years.

‘I don’t think any demand has been raised for such a long period with such an intense feeling,’ he said.

The passage of the bill and the manner in which it was done came under severe criticism from various parties.

A fuming YS Jaganmohan Reddy, leader of the YSR Congress which is bitterly against the creation of Telangana, dubbed it ‘a black day’ for the country and called a general strike in Andhra Pradesh on Wednesday.

The reaction to the development was immediate with central minister D. Purandeswari reportedly sending her resignation to Sonia Gandhi.

Three Andhra Pradesh ministers from Seemandhra resigned in protest while chief minister N Kiran Kumar Reddy is all set to quit on Wednesday. Pitani Satyanarayana, one of the ministers, said Kiran Reddy would submit his resignation on Wednesday morning.

Central ministers from Seemandhra hit out at their own party-led government for passing the bill in ‘undemocratic’ manner.

‘It is totally undemocratic, immoral and unethical,’ said textiles minister KS Rao, who like other ministers from Seemandhra hope that the bill will be stalled in Rajya Sabha. Human resource development minister MM Pallam Raju said the bill was passed against all democratic norms.

Another minister K Chiranjeevi said after the meeting with Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi last night, they hoped that justice would be done to Seemandhra. He said the BJP also disappointed them.

Vijayawada MP L Rajagopal, who had used pepper spray in Lok Sabha last week to protest tabling of the bill, announced that he is retiring from politics for failing to stop bifurcation.

Telangana bill to be ‘immediately’ brought in Rajya Sabha: Kamal Nath

New Delhi:
After Lok Sabha passed the Telangana bill, the government on Tuesday said it will ‘immediately’ bring the legislation in Rajya Sabha.

Parliamentatry affairs minister Kamal Nath said the Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Bill will be brought in the Upper House ‘immediately’ along with the 38 amendments approved by Lok Sabha. Talking to reporters outside Parliament House, he attacked BJP for playing a ‘double game’ on the controversial Telangana issue.

‘BJP has said the bill is unconstitutional. But they still supported it. This shows their double game. They stand exposed,’ Nath said. The bill to carve out Telangana state from Andhra Pradesh was passed by Lok Sabha amid din and strong protests by members from Seemandhra region, including ministers.

The Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Bill, 2014 was adopted by a voice vote along with around 38 official amendments, with main opposition BJP coming on board.

Not technical, it was a ‘tactical glitch,’ says Swaraj on blackout

New Delhi:
Lok Sabha TV has explained that a ‘technical glitch’ caused an unprecedented blackout of Parliament proceedings in the period today that the lower house hurriedly discussed and passed the controversial legislation that creates a Telangana state by bifurcating Andhra Pradesh. Three minutes after the Lok Sabha reconvened at 3 pm on Tuesday and home minister Sushil Kumar Shinde moved the bill for passage, live telecast ended. The House, meanwhile, took up the bill clause by clause and passed it by voice vote, with the BJP supporting the government in passing the bill. The rest of India was blacked out. The BJP’s Sushma Swaraj, Leader of Opposition in the Lok Sabha, has tweeted, ‘They say that the blackout of Lok Sabha was due to a ‘technical glitch’.

No. It was a tactical glitch.’ She also said, ‘We strongly condemn the blackout of the proceedings of Lok Sabha. It was done without our knowledge.’ BJP chief Rajnath Singh said, ‘The manner in which the bill was pushed through by the government was not transparent and utterly undemocratic.’
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