Andhra Pradesh government moves Pinnacle Court against High Court's Amravati is simply capital ruling

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The Andhra Pradesh government has filed a Special Leave Petition within the Supreme Court on the contentious Amaravati issue, over six months after the supreme court ruled that the state legislature "lacked competence" to create any legislation for shifting the capital.

The regime under Chief Minister Jagan Mohan Reddy approached the apex court on Friday night for relief against the High Court's March 3 verdict.

Through the SLP, the regime sought to challenge the supreme court judgment on six grounds, including the facility to legislate.

Official sources, however, said some "corrections" were required to be made within the SLP and a modified version would be filed in Supreme Court on Monday.

In the common unanimous order, a three-member bench of the tribunal comprising magistrate Prashant Kumar Mishra and Justices M Satyanarayana Murthy and Somayajulu on March 3 noted that the establishment of three organs of the state -- legislature, executive, and judiciary -- is an element and parcel of the "supplemental, incidental or consequential provisions" employed in Article 4 of the Constitution.

"Parliament alone is competent to undertake such exercise, but not the state legislature. The facts on record like approval of passing of legislation (APCRDA Act, 2014) and absorbing land under the Land Pooling Scheme under the APCRDA Act, 2014, payment of Rs 15,000 crore for capital city and region development is sufficient to conclude that Parliament delegated power to the state under Article 258 (2) of the Constitution of India, which may be a just once delegation," the bench had observed.

The bench delivered a 300-page verdict on a batch of 63 writ petitions filed by aggrieved farmers of Amaravati region against the state government's decision to create Visakhapatnam the manager capital, Kurnool the judicial capital and confining Amaravati because the legislative capital of province.

The supreme court had held that the state (government) and therefore the AP Capital Region Development Authority violated the elemental rights of the petitioners (farmers who parted with their land) and directed that the state construct and develop Amaravati capital city and capital region within six months time.

Significantly, the authorities filed an affidavit within the state supreme court on April 1 this year stating that trunk infrastructure within the capital would be developed in 60 months. It also said the state requested the Centre to grant Rs 1.09 lakh crore for infrastructure development.

In the SLP, the state contended that "it would be destructive of the federal structure of the Constitution" if the state failed to have the facility to re-organise its capital.

"Whether adjudication of a tutorial issue, that too, about the competence of legislature, a coordinate organ of governance of the State, after the withdrawal of the three capitals legislation, constitutes a breakdown of the principle of separation of powers between various organs of governance, which may be a basic structure of the constitution," is that the other contention raised by the AP government.

It also noted that "the settled position in law within the country is that the ability under Article 258 is simply relatable to delegation of executive and administrative powers and not the legislative power of the Union".

"Our government's stated commitment to the people is decentralisation of governance. Trifurcation of capitals is one in all the milestones in pursuit of that commitment. Filing of the SLP is another remedy in law being sought to enable further progress within the resolve of the state," official sources added.