New Delhi: A three-day special session of the Andhra Pradesh Assembly will begin on Monday, amid tight security, to decide upon decentralisation of the state capital Amaravati. The session comes amid massive protests across the state against the proposed move, which would see Visakhapatnam and Kurnool as joint-capitals of the state along with Amaravati.
CM YS Jagan Mohan Reddy will chair a cabinet meeting before the commencement of the session, which will begin at 11 AM. The proposal to decentralise the capital is likely to be cleared at the meet, before being presented in the Assembly, where the Chief Minister’s YSR Congress Party (YSRCP) enjoys a brute majority.
Large gatherings have been banned in the city and the National Security Act (NSA), which allows the police to make preventive detentions and detain individuals for up to 12 months without trial, has also been imposed across the state, along with Section 144. A three-ring security cordon will be on the routes that the Chief Minister is expected to take to prevent traffic disruption.
Massive protests have been going on in 29 villages of Amaravati, as well as other parts of the state for nearly five weeks by farmers who are opposing the state government’s proposal to shift the state capital from Amaravati. The opposition, led by former Chief Minister and Telugu Desam Party (TDP) chief N Chandrababu Naidu, too, has slammed the government and called for a ‘Chalo Assembly‘ march to the Assembly today.
Amaravati, incidentally, was announced by Naidu in 2014 after Telangana was carved from Andhra Pradesh with Hyderabad as joint capital.
Chief Minister Jagan has argued that the government cannot spend Rs 1 lakh crore to build the grand, new capital city. He has also accused some people close to his predecessor Naidu of being involved in insider trading in real estate.
If approved, the move will see Amaravati as the legislative capital, Visakhapatnam as the executive capital and Kurnool as the judicial capital of Andhra Pradesh.