Law and Order in Hyderabad under Governor
Antony Panel Bats for Seemandhra, high-level Antony Committee, Seemandhra Issue. The high-level Antony Committee has finalised its recommendations, virtually proposing a package for Seemandhra. With the Draft Report ready, Antony Committee is likely to meet and adopt it and submit it to Congress president Sonia Gandhi soon.
- Draft report deals with status of Hyd, water & irrigation, tax and cadre division among other contentious issues
- Supports many of the recommendations of Srikrishna panel on water, irrigation and power
- Centre should fully fund new capital for Seemandhra
- Setting up of AIIMS, IITs, IIMs, NIT, NIFT, a Central university and other educational and health institutions
- Admission to educational institutions in Hyd should continue in the existing pattern
- Joint capital should cover GHMC limits
- Metro Corridor for Visakhapatnam
- Inclusion of Bhadrachalam revenue division in Seemandhra
- Hyderabad revenue to be shared between Telangana and Seemandhra for 10 years
- Special economic package for the backward region of Rayalaseema and North Andhra
- Polavaram should be under Centre as a national project
The high-level Antony Committee has finalised its recommendations, virtually proposing a package for Seemandhra. With the Draft Report ready, Antony Committee is likely to meet and adopt it and submit it to Congress president Sonia Gandhi soon.
The Draft Report dwelt at length on Hyderabad status, water for irrigation and tax and cadre division, which are among the contentious issues. Sonia Gandhi had set up the Antony Committee to look into the issues of concern to the people of Seemandhra and how to address the same.
Expectedly, focus of the Antony Committee Report is only on the Seemandhra region. It strongly advocated that the Draft Bill, while protecting the completed and ongoing irrigation projects based on assured allocations of water made by various Tribunals, should put in place an independent and autonomous institutional mechanism represented by the successor states to enforce the Tribunal Awards by regulating the storage and distribution of water.
It was pointed out that Justice B N Srikrishna Committee has gone into great details of sharing of water, irrigation and power in Chapter 4. Antony Committee supported the recommendation of Srikrishna Committee in paragraphs 4.5.06, 4.508 and para 4.9 of the report. Antony Committee also suggested that the Union Government should fully fund all expenditure for the creation of a new capital of Seemandhra. Regarding special provision of Article 371-D in the Constitution, with reference to Andhra Pradesh, the committee has appended a special note in Annexure- III of the Draft Report. As most of the premier educational and health institutions are located in Hyderabad, the Union Government must encourage setting up of institutions like AIIMS, IIT, IIM, Central Universities and other Educational and Health Institutions of repute in Seemandhra Region, it stated.
The Antony Committee strongly recommended handing over the existing Airport at Vishakapatnam from the Defence to the Civil Aviation and the airport nearest to Seemandhra capital as an International Airport. The Congress panel has proposed that as most of the industries in the manufacturing and IT sector have been set up in and around Hyderabad, the Antony Committee recommended a Tax Benefit Package for Seemandhra, as given to the Hill States of Uttarakhand, Himachal Pradesh, Assam and other such states for the next 10 years. As most of the companies paying taxes are registered in Hyderabad, bulk of the State Revenue is collected from the city of Hyderabad.
The committee recommended that adequate protection should be given to the Seemandhra region in sharing the revenue collected in the city of Hyderabad. As most of the educational institutions are located in Hyderabad, the Committee recommended that the same principles of admission in these Educational Institutions should continue for the next 10 years as they exist today. It pointed out that as a result of the provocative statements made by TRS leaders, there has been great amount of concern and nervousness among the people of Seemandhra, who have acquired property and set up business in Hyderabad.
Antony Committee strongly recommended that adequate provisions should be provided in the Draft Bill, which instills confidence among the Seemandhra people, who have set up business and acquired property in Hyderabad. The Bill should have a provision to ensure that the Government of Telangana in future does not pass a Bill to acquire property and business with retrospective effect, it stated. There are established principles, which were followed in the option of cadres by the Union Government, which should be followed, it stated. Employees of all cadres, who are retiring within 24 months, can be retained in their present working places, if they are interested to stay at these places.
The Antony committee recommended a fair and judicious method should be adopted for sharing of the revenue, assets and liabilities of unified Andhra Pradesh, keeping in mind the population, per capita income of each region and the revenue accruing from the city of Hyderabad. The Union Government, it stated, must provide a special financial package for development of Backward Region of Rayalaseema and North Coastal districts of Andhra Pradesh. The Polavaram Project should be taken up by the Union Government as a National Project, fully funded by the Centre, it added.