TDP blocks passage of bill on decentralisation of AP in Legislative Council

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Amaravati:  The Andhra Pradesh Decentralisation of Governance and Inclusive Development of All Regions Bill 2020, which got a smooth passage in the Legislative Assembly on Monday, could not be taken up for discussion in the Legislative Council on Tuesday with the treasury and Opposition benches locking horns over rule position leading to repeated adjournments.

The Bill was intended for creation of three capitals — legislative at Amaravati, an executive at Visakhapatnam and judicial at Kurnool.

As soon as the House commenced for the day, Council Chairman Md Shariff allowed the notice issued by TDP under Rule 71 to move a motion to disapprove the government policy. Under Rule 71, the Opposition reserves the right to have a debate on a bill or topic. The TDP, which is in majority in the 58-member council issued a notice under the Rule 71. After taking the headcount of TDP members, the Chairman gave his consent for the motion.

However, when Leader of Opposition in the Council Yanamala Ramakrishnudu sought permission for discussion on the motion moved, Legislative affairs minister Buggana Rajendranath objected.

He said as per rules, official business — that is the introduction of Bills already passed in the Assembly and sent to Council — has to be taken up. It led to an argument between ministers and Yanamala, with the latter adamant on his stance citing rules.

With this, the Chairman adjourned the House for 10 minutes and asked both the Leader of the House and Leader of Opposition to his chamber.

When the House recommenced, the Chair said using his discretion he is allowing discussion on the motion moved Under rule 71 for two hours.

When Buggana Rajendranath implored the Chair to reconsider and let the Government business be taken up first, Shariff said notice under Rule 71 shall be honoured.

Botcha Satyanarayana asked the Chair not to use the powers for political interests.

The Chair asked him not to attribute things to the Chair. At that time Yanamala citing rule 141 said that when the Assembly sends Bills to the Council, the chairman can take up the Bill within two days at his discretion.

With the ruling and Opposition sticking to there respective arguments, the House was adjourned twice and debate on the Bill could not be taken up.

The Opposition TDP has a majority in the 58 member Legislative Council and it wants to stall the passage of the Bill at least in the Council for the time being.

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