AP govt files SLP in Supreme Court against HC verdict on Amaravati

PTI | Amaravati | Updated: 17-09-2022 21:41 IST | Created: 17-09-2022 21:41 IST
AP govt files SLP in Supreme Court against HC verdict on Amaravati
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The Andhra Pradesh government has filed a Special Leave Petition in the Supreme Court on the contentious Amaravati issue, more than six months after the High Court ruled that the state legislature ''lacked competence'' to make any legislation for shifting the capital.

The regime under Chief Minister Jagan Mohan Reddy approached the apex court on Friday night for relief against the High Court's March 3 verdict.

Through the SLP, the state government sought to challenge the High Court judgment on six grounds, including the power to legislate.

Official sources, however, said some ''corrections'' were required to be made in the SLP and a modified version would be filed in Supreme Court on Monday.

In the common unanimous order, a three-member bench of the High Court comprising Chief Justice Prashant Kumar Mishra and Justices M Satyanarayana Murthy and Somayajulu on March 3 noted that the establishment of three organs of the state -- legislature, executive, and judiciary -- is part and parcel of the ''supplemental, incidental or consequential provisions'' employed in Article 4 of the Constitution.

''Parliament alone is competent to undertake such exercise, but not the state legislature. The facts on record like approval of passing of legislation (APCRDA Act, 2014) and taking up land under the Land Pooling Scheme under the APCRDA Act, 2014, payment of Rs 15,000 crore for capital city and region development is sufficient to conclude that Parliament delegated power to the state under Article 258 (2) of the Constitution of India, which is a one time delegation,'' the bench had observed.

The bench delivered a 300-page verdict on a batch of 63 writ petitions filed by aggrieved farmers of Amaravati region against the state government's decision to make Visakhapatnam the executive capital, Kurnool the judicial capital and confining Amaravati as the legislative capital of Andhra Pradesh.

The High Court had held that the state (government) and the AP Capital Region Development Authority violated the fundamental rights of the petitioners (farmers who parted with their land) and directed that the state construct and develop Amaravati capital city and capital region within six months time.

Significantly, the state government filed an affidavit in the High Court on April 1 this year stating that trunk infrastructure in the capital would be developed in 60 months. It also said the state requested the Centre to grant Rs 1.09 lakh crore for infrastructure development.

In the SLP, the state contended that ''it would be destructive of the federal structure of the Constitution'' if the state did not have the power to re-organise its capital.

''Whether adjudication of an academic issue, that too, about the competence of legislature, a coordinate organ of governance of the State, after the withdrawal of the three capitals legislation, constitutes a breakdown of the principle of separation of powers between various organs of governance, which is a basic structure of the constitution,'' is the other contention raised by the AP government.

It also noted that ''the settled position in law in the country is that the power under Article 258 is only relatable to delegation of executive and administrative powers and not the legislative power of the Union''.

''Our government's stated commitment to the people is decentralisation of governance. Trifurcation of capitals is one of the milestones in pursuit of that commitment. Filing of the SLP is another remedy in law being sought to enable further progress in the resolve of the state,'' official sources added.

(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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