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Andhra Pradesh high court special bench to hear Amaravati pleas

The high court located in Amaravati also admitted a petition challenging constitutional rights of the AP government to decide on shifting the HC to Kurnool. Further, the court has also admitted a public interest litigation filed by Rajadhani Rythu Parirakshana Samithi challenging the constitutional validity of shifting the capital from Amaravati.

ET Bureau|
Last Updated: Jan 23, 2020, 08.03 AM IST
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HYDERABAD: The Andhra Pradesh high court has said it will appoint a two-member special bench to hear petitions challenging the decision of the YS Jagan Mohan Reddy government to shift the capital city away from Amaravati and to have three capitals. The court admitted petitions of the farmers of Amaravati region who had pooled land for the construction of the capital city and posted the hearings for a later day after the advocate-general informed the court that the legislative council was discussing the bill on three capitals.

The high court located in Amaravati also admitted a petition challenging constitutional rights of the AP government to decide on shifting the HC to Kurnool. Further, the court has also admitted a public interest litigation filed by Rajadhani Rythu Parirakshana Samithi challenging the constitutional validity of shifting the capital from Amaravati.

Ambati Sudhakar Rao, counsel representing the petitioners, told journalists outside the court that the chief justice indicated appointing a two-member special bench to hear the petitions on Amaravati, while posting hearings to various dates.

Following this, the YSRCP government decided to avail the services of former attorney general Mukul Rohatgi to defend the government in cases on the capital city in the high court. The government has allocated ?5 crore and paid an advance of?1 crore for Rohatgi’s services. Rohatgi had appeared for Reddy in the Supreme Court to defend him in a disproportionate assets case against CBI.

Amidst protests by thousands of farmers of Amaravati region, who attempted to lay siege on the assembly building on Monday, the government obtained assembly approval for the bill to decentralise administration by having three capitals. The ruling YSRCP, which has a strength of 151 members in the 175-member assembly, also obtained approval of the house to repeal the Capital Region Development Authority Act. However, the Opposition Telugu Desam Party, which has majority of 28 in the 58-member legislative council, succeeded on Tuesday night to pass a motion against the government’s three capitals proposal.

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