Capital call leaves Rayalaseema leaders disappointed

Express News Service

VIJAYAWADA: The sudden decision of the State government to withdraw the AP Decentralisation and Inclusive Development of All Regions Act and the Capital Region Development Authority (APCRDA) Repeal Act left the leaders of Rayalaseema disappointed. 

At a time when they were feeling that though the Sribagh Pact, one of the factors for the formation of Andhra State in 1953, was not fulfilled, the YSRC government was making it up partially by selecting Kurnool as the seat of the Andhra Pradesh High Court and assuring a decentralised development of the State.

“But, now coming under the ‘pressure’, the Act has been withdrawn. Through an assurance was given to come out with a more foolproof Act, people of Rayalaseema could not help but to feel disappointed at the turn of events,”  said  Ch Chandrasekhar Reddy, Rayalaseema Karmika Karshaka Samithi President, and a reputed trade union leader.

He said as per Sribagh Pact in 1938, when Andhra leaders held discussions with Rayalaseema leaders for the creation of separate Andhra State from the then undivided Madras Province, it was agreed that Rayalaseema region will get the first priority in setting up capital city and the High Court will go to the other region. 

Pointing out that the people of Rayalaseema agreed to forgo Kurnool as the Capital City to pave way for making Hyderabad the Capital of the united Andhra Pradesh and never held back in contributing to its development or that of the State though development of their own region being neglected, Chandrasekhra Reddy said when the State was bifurcated, by logic Kurnool should have been retained as the Capital city of the reorganised Andhra as Hyderabad, which was the capital of the erstwhile Hyderabad State (Nizam State), went to Telangana. 

“However, it did not happen and the region in the well-developed Krishna-Guntur region was made the capital. What was the need for locating the capital in the already developed region when there was always a chance of course correction by locating the capital city in the backward region, which would have sparked the development of the region? “ he questioned. 

Chandrasekhar Reddy said ramifications of not fulfilling the aspirations of one region could be far-reaching. “Though it has been promised that withdrawal of the three capitals Act is only temporary, people are suspicious. If the promised development and decentralisation do  not happen, it might only strengthen the hands of those who have been advocating separate greater Rayalaseema state,” he cautioned. 

Agreeing with the observation, another Rayalaseema leader D Chandramouelswara Reddy said though there is a hope that everything would be resolved as Jagan has promised to come out with even a better legislation with broader consultation to ensure balanced development of all regions of the state, people of the region feel let down, as “something given to them has been snatched away”. 

It should not be forgotten that by rallying on a three-capital issue, the YSRC bagged victory in every election in the region. If there is a delay in the development of the region, the movement for a separate Rayalaseema might gain ground,” he said. 

Pointing at Sribagh Pact and promised development of Rayalaseema, Rayalaseema Saagu Neeti Sadhana Samithi president Bojja Dasaratha said the focus now should be on getting presidential orders for setting up the High Court in Kurnool, before making any other decision. 

Similarly, KRMB headquarters should be located in Kurnool. The lapse in KRMB notification, which mentioned projects in Rayalaseema region  as projects without permission, should be corrected. “If not, Rayalaseema will be denied water which in turn, will affect its development,” he said. 

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