In a blow for the Jagan Mohan Reddy government in Andhra Pradesh, the Supreme Court has not accepted a request from the state to stay the high court order from March last year that told the YSRCP government to develop Amaravati as the state's capital within six months.
The court will hear the request, along with other petitions related to the problem, on July 11, according to Justices KM Joseph and BV Nagaratna.
In the state assembly, Chief Minister Jagan Mohan Reddy declared that he would relocate to Visakhapatnam and work from the coastal city beginning in July.
Justice Joseph will retire on June 16, and the case is expected to be heard by a new bench in July.
What was the issue?
After the former Andhra Pradesh was divided into Telangana and a truncated Andhra Pradesh in 2014, both were supposed to share Hyderabad as their capital for ten years.
Chandrababu Naidu, the new state's Chief Minister, declared plans to establish a world-class greenfield capital in Amaravati. Prime Minister Narendra Modi attended the historic event.
Thousands of acres of land were purchased, and large plans were put up for the construction of the new capital, despite the fact that funding proved to be a major obstacle.
When Reddy became Chief Minister in May 2019, his government allegedly committed a massive land acquisition fraud, abandoned plans for a new capital in Amaravati, and abolished the AP Capital Region Development Authority.
Reddy announced decentralisation in a new law, saying the state will have three capitals: a judicial capital in Kurnool, a legislative capital in Amaravati, and an executive capital in Vizag.
However, this resulted in legal complications. In November, the government withdrew its decentralisation bill and terminated the APCRDA.
In March 2022, the Andhra Pradesh High Court ruled in favour of Amaravati farmers, ordering that the capital be built in Amaravati according to the master plan outlined in the Capital Region Development Authority Act within six months. The state government filed a petition with the Supreme Court.
This was in response to various applications filed by farmers challenging the repeal of the CRDA Act, which had been approved by the Chandrababu Naidu government in order to create a grand capital at Amaravati, for which they had provided land.
A high court division bench led by Chief Justice Prashant Kumar Mishra issued its final decision on a slew of petitions contesting the Decentralisation Act and the repeal of the Andhra Pradesh CRDA Act.
The state government withdrew the AP Decentralisation Act and CRDA Repeal Act in November.
The petitioners in the case expressed concern about unresolved issues related to the CRDA act, such as the transfer of developer plots to landowners who had given up their farm lands, basic infrastructure and development, and land mortgaging in banks.
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