Issues Faced by the AP Post-Bifurcation

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What’s in today’s article?

  • Why in News?
  • Issues Faced by the AP Post-Bifurcation
  • What Needs to be Done?

Why in News?

  • Several issues relating to the Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Act 2014 (APRA) remain pending between the two successor states - Telangana and AP, ten years after their bifurcation.
  • Political analyses of the TDP's kingmaker role in the NDA have focused on Chandrababu Naidu's years-long efforts to secure AP's Special Category Status.

Issues Faced by the AP Post-Bifurcation:

  • State without a capital:
    • According to the Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Act 2014,Hyderabad would be the common capital of AP and Telangana until June 2, 2024.
    • While a few office spaces, an interim Secretariat, and a High Court have been established, successive governments have not been able to make Amaravati the capital.
  • State has not made rapid strides in terms of economic development:
    • The economy of the State has not improved compared to States such as Maharashtra and Gujarat.
    • Apart from Kia Motors in Anantapur, reportedly no other major players have ventured into Andhra Pradesh. 
  • Major projects remain unrealised dreams: Major projects such as the Polavaram project, the Kadapa Steel Plant, and the South Coast Railway Zone in Visakhapatnam are delayed as they are not technically and economically feasible.
  • High revenue deficit:
    • The Reorganisation Act mandated the Union government to lend support to AP for its resource gap for 2014-15.
    • The revenue deficit was estimated by the State government at ₹16,078 crore, however it was reduced to ₹3,979.50 crore by the Union government.
    • The revenue deficit touched ₹31,479.88 crore by March 2024 (preliminary estimates).
  • Unresolved issues AP and Telangana:
    • The division of various institutions and corporations, listed in the Reorganisation Act, has not been completed due to a lack of consensus.
    • Assets belonging to nearly 245 institutions (worth about ₹1.42 lakh crore) mentioned in the Reorganisation Act, are yet to be divided between the two States.
  • The people of AP attached to Hyderabad emotionally and economically:
    • The people of Andhra continue to rely on Hyderabad for health and educational facilities.
    • Policymakers and bureaucrats are not in Hyderabad, but they are still connected to the city emotionally.
    • This could be one of the reasons for the tardy progress in Andhra Pradesh.

What Needs to be Done?

  • Establishing a capital in the State:
    • The YSRCP put forth the idea of three capitals, but this may not be easy and may run into legal issues.
    • Similarly, a grandiose capital, as planned by the TDP, will have fiscal problems if the various welfare schemes promised in the manifestos are implemented.
    • To win investors’ confidence, the government has to develop a capital with the resources it has now.
  • The development of infrastructural facilities: This will give a big boost to the industry and service sector. As the Union government is prioritising port-led development, AP can look for a bigger share in the pie given its coastal advantage.
  • Pending issues with Telangana need to be resolved:
    • Telangana must pay ₹6,756 crore to AP for the supply of power post-bifurcation (from June 2, 2014, to June 10, 2017).
    • The river management boards which were supposed to be set up in AP should be shifted to the State from Hyderabad.
    • Courts must adjudicate pending disputes, which includes division of the AP State Financial Corporation’s assets, sharing of Krishna and Godavari waters, etc., on a priority basis.

Discussion on Special Category Status to AP: This would make up for the revenue losses incurred by the AP following the split of the united state in 2014.

Q.1. Which constitutional provision is used for the bifurcation of States in India?

According to the Article 3 of the Indian Constitution, the Parliament may by law form a new State by separation of territory from any State or by uniting two or more States or parts of States or by uniting any territory to a part of any State.

Q.2. Why is ‘special category status’ demanded by states in India?

Special category status is a classification of regions or states by the central government to provide special assistance in the form of tax benefits and financial support for development of the region.

Source: Andhra Pradesh vs Telangana: Unresolved issues between the states that went to court | DH | TH