statesman news service
New Delhi, 5 December
The Union Cabinet today cleared the draft Telangana Bill, accepting the recommendations of the Group of Ministers for creation of a Telangana state. The contentious proposal to add two districts of Rayalseema region, Kurnool and Anantapur, to the proposed Telangana state was dropped on the intervention of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi, sources said.
As per the Bill, the newly crafted state of Telangana will have 10 districts while the residuary state of Andhra Pradesh will have the remaining 12 districts.
Hyderabad would be the common capital of the proposed Telangana state and the residuary state of Andhra Pradesh for not more than 10 years. Both states would have special status.
Talking to the media after the Cabinet meeting, Union Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde said the Cabinet has cleared the recommendations of the GoM for creation of a separate Telangana state having 10 districts and the successor state of Andhra Pradesh having 12 districts.
On the status of Hyderabad, Mr Shinde said the Governor of Telangana will have the additional responsibility of protecting life, property and ensuring security to people living in the Greater Municipal area of Hyderabad. The Centre would also appoint two advisers to the Governor.
He said the Bill will be sent to the President tomorrow with a request to make a reference to the Andhra Pradesh Assembly to obtain its views. He said the government was keen on tabling the Bill in the Winter session of Parliament.
Earlier, there were reports that the government might add the two districts of Rayalseema, Anantapur and Kurnool, in the proposed state of Telangana. But the proposal was dropped at the last hour, apparently after widespread protests in Telangana by the TRS and other political parties.
According to the Bill, the Centre will extend financial and other support to the creation of a new capital for the residuary state of Andhra Pradesh to be identified by an expert committee.
An institutional mechanism will be put in place to manage water resources and projects on Krishna and Godavari rivers in an amicable and equitable manner. Polavaram will be declared as a national project and will be executed by the Union government.
Detailed provisions have been made in the Bill on matters relating to coal, power, oil and gas, division of assets and liabilities and allocation of government employees.
Article 371 D will continue for the both states to ensure equitable opportunities for education and public employment.Existing admission quotas in higher technical and medical institutions will continue for a period not exceeding five years.
The Group of Ministers, constituted to look into the bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh, had its last meeting on Wednesday and today presented its report along with the draft Telangana Bill.