The Andhra Pradesh Assembly on Monday passed a resolution to dissolve the Legislative Council of the state. The decision came after the state cabinet, headed by Chief Minister YS Jaganmohan Reddy, approved the draft Bill to abolish the Upper House of the state legislature. The decision to abolish the Andhra Pradesh Legislative Council was taken in the cabinet meeting held on Monday.
The move comes in the wake of the Legislative Council, dominated by members of the opposition Telugu Desam Party (TDP), blocking the ruling YSRCP party's move to create three state capitals instead of a single capital city in Amaravati. Following this, Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy had questioned the need for the Upper House of the state Legislature last week.
The cabinet resolved to abolish the Legislative Council in the wake of alleged misuse by the opposition TDP's majority to halt the bills that had been cleared in the legislative Assembly. Earlier instances include delaying and rejecting the separate commissions for Scheduled Caste (SC) and Scheduled Tribe (ST). The Council had also rejected the bill to introduce English medium education in government schools.
The draft bill for abolishing the Legislative Council will now be presented in the Assembly, where the ruling YSRCP has a majority, and can, therefore, easily clear the Bill. Thereafter, it will be sent to the Union Home Ministry for approval in the Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha. The Bill will have to be cleared by both Houses of Parliament before it can be sent to the President of India for his assent.
Once the Bill becomes an Act, the Jagan governmentâ€™s three state capital proposal will be implemented.
The Secretariat and other head offices of various government departments in the state will be shifted out of Amaravati, to Vizag. This will make Visakhapatnam the executive capital, or the primary capital of the state.
The Assembly sessions will continue to be held in Amaravati, which will become the legislative capital.
The High Court, which is presently situated in Amaravati, is expected to be shifted to Kurnool, which will be made the judicial capital. HC benches will be set up in both Amaravati and Vizag, as per the initial proposal for decentralisation.
The Andhra Pradesh High Court recently passed interim orders against moving of the Secretariat and other head offices out of Amaravati, observing that since the Bills related to the decentralisation of capitals were still being reviewed by the Legislative Council, the court will not make any decision on it.
Meanwhile, the TDP boycotted the proceedings of the Assembly on Monday in protest.
With inputs from IANS