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Telangana debate to resume today; AP session may extend

Debate on the draft Telangana Bill will resume in the Andhra Pradesh Assembly on Friday when the House reassembles after a week-long Sankranti festival break.

With reports suggesting that president Pranab Mukherjee may give ten more days to the assembly to discuss the draft Andhra Pradesh Re-organisation Bill, 2013 and return it, the session may be extended by that many days beyond 23 January when it is originally scheduled to conclude.

However, the state government is yet to make a formal request to the president to extend the session for returning the draft Bill but official sources said a request could be sent to the Centre on 20 January. Thousands of ‘amendments’ were proposed to all clauses of the draft Bill by legislators from coastal Andhra and Rayalaseema regions. The Seemaandhra legislators primarily proposed ‘deletion’ of Clause 1 that, according to the draft Bill, stands for enactment of the Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Act, in effect seeking to keep the state united.The Telangana side too sought several changes in the draft Bill but termed them ‘views-suggestions.’

The Telangana MLAs opposed the clause 8 that seeks to vest decisive powers with the ‘common Governor’ and clause 5 (1) that makes Hyderabad the ‘common capital’ for a period not exceeding ten years. The Telangana Congress suggested that Hyderabad may be made the common capital temporarily for a period not exceeding ten years or till completion of the new capital for residuary state, whichever is earlier.
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