Hyderabad: Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy’s announcement that the state is going to have three capitals in order to decentralise administration, will have political and financial impact on political parties.
Mr Reddy is following the Sivaramakrishnan committee report with some changes. The previous government of Mr Chandrababu Naidu had thrown the report into the dustbin and decided to construct the capital at Amaravati, going against the advice of the report.
Mr Reddy's announcement is a setback to rich politicians and realtors who have bought huge chunks of land in and around Amaravati expecting huge financial benefits. Several political leaders and others of the Kamma community, which supports the Telugu Desam in a big way, have invested huge amounts of money in lands in and around Amaravati. Some of them bought assignment lands also. They are likely to face huge loses. If the Kammas are to be weakened financially, this will help the YSRC in the stronghold of the Kamma community.
Decentralising, by locating some important offices in other parts of the state, will also help the YSRC politically. In fact, when Mr Naidu had announced the Amaravati plan, several people and organisations opposed it, citing the example of Hyderabad.
They suggested that all investments should not be centred in one place and will lead to another agitation by some other regions of the state. The Sivaramakrishnan committee which favoured decentralisation of administration, had suggested locating the High Court at Visakhapatnam and setting up a High Court bench in Kurnool or Anantapur. The High Court will be located in Kurnool now and the HC bench will be set up at Visakhapatnam. The previous TD government had pooled about 33,000 acres of land from farmers. Mr Reddy has said several times that 10,000 acres is enough for a capital city and the remaining land should be returned to the owners. The Secretariat, Assembly and Legislative Council buildings and Raj Bhavan will be in Amaravati, but other important offices will be located in other parts of the state.
During the 2014 Assembly elections, there was speculation that if the YSRC comes to power the capital city will be located at Donakonda in Prakasam district, stronghold of the Reddy community and if the TD comes to power, the capital will be located in Krishna or Guntur districts....