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Telangana, AP officials to meet on April 6 over bifurcation after two years

Posted April 1st, 2021, 10:40 AM IST

Telangana, AP officials to meet on April 6 over bifurcation after two years

After a gap of nearly two years, the Centre has convened a meeting between Telangana and Andhra Pradesh to resolve state bifurcation-related disputes between both states and review the status of implementing assurances given to both states under AP Reorganisation Act, 2014.

Official delegations led by chief secretaries of both states will take part in the meeting through video conference on April 6. Though the meeting was scheduled on March 31, it has been postponed on the request of Telangana.

The union ministry of home affairs (MHA) convened last such meeting in August 2019. Sources said all major contentious issues, including distribution of assets and liabilities, remain unresolved even seven years after bifurcation.

Only two service matters – repatriation of Telangana Class IV employees working in AP and cadre allotment to Additional SPs and DSPs in police department – have been addressed by both the states. While the first one was out of mutual understanding, the other could be completed on directions of Telangana High Court.

“The MHA is playing more of a spectator role. It is high time both states make serious efforts to resolve issues,” sources say. As these disputes are not linked to the timeframe of 10 years, they will drag for years if the two states are not sincere about finding a solution, they added.

Official sources said Telangana chief secretary Somesh Kumar, who received the note from MHA, briefed Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao on Wednesday about the meeting. The CM directed officials to prepare reports pertaining to pending bifurcation issues and present TS government arguments effectively before the MHA in the meeting.

In its latest report (2018–19) tabled in Legislative Assembly on March 26, the Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG) had pointed out that Rs. 1,51,349 crore under capital heads, Rs. 28,099 crore under loans and advances, Rs. 4,474 crore under deposits and advances, Rs. 238 crore under suspense and miscellaneous, and Rs. 310 crore under remittances are yet to be apportioned between AP and TS ever after bifurcation of state in 2014.

Both states continue to lodge complaints against each other with the centre, besides knocking doors of High Court and Supreme Court for control over common institutions listed under Schedule IX, and X, mostly located in Hyderabad.

The two states are also engaged in disputes over sharing of Krishna and Godavari river waters, accusing each other of flouting the AP Reorganisation Act and taking up new projects without seeking required approvals from the centre or other regulatory bodies.

The state government is planning to depute senior officials from industries, irrigation, general administration and other departments for the meeting.

The CS directed officials concerned to come prepared with relevant documents and files in support of arguments made by the state government in the past.
Some of the major issues that are expected to figure in the meeting include division of assets and liabilities of Schedule IX and X institutions, AP Bhavan in New Delhi, Singareni Collieries Company Limited, AP Heavy Machinery and Equipment Ltd., AP State Finance Corporation, apart from claims and counterclaims on payment of power dues by distribution companies of the two states.