Andhra to raise special category status at Southern Council meet


With Tirupati all set to host the Southern Council Meet, Andhra Pradesh chief minister Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy, Wednesday, took stock of the issues to be raised by the state. The state government is preparing to take up several pending issues related to the state’s bifurcation which led to the formation of Telangana state.

Chief ministers and lieutenant governors of the south Indian states and union territories, will converge on the temple-town of Tirupati in Andhra Pradesh on November 14, for the 29th Southern Zonal Council meet to be chaired by Union Home Minister Amit Shah.

The Covid second wave had forced the meet to be rescheduled from March this year, to November.

At Wednesday’s meeting to discuss the state’s agenda for the meeting, Reddy directed the state government officials to include the key issues pertaining to the state, and be prepared to handle queries related to Andhra Pradesh that any of the other states may raise in the meeting.

The officials informed the Chief Minister that pending issues related to the State Formation Act have been included in the agenda along with the Polavaram project and power dues of Rs 6,300 crore. The dues from Tamil Nadu for the Telugu Ganga project, revenue shortfall, pending arrears in Civil Supplies from Telangana State and Rational allocation of PDS rice by the Centre are also being included in the agenda.

Officials said that it has also been decided to voice the demand for Special Status provision promised at the time of bifurcation to the State. The issue of bringing the Jurala project under the purview of KRMB along with a discussion on the proposal by Centre on interlinking rivers, have been included in the state’s agenda list, apart from freezing of FD accounts, division of assets and other key issues related to bifurcation.

Andhra Pradesh, Kerala, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Telangana, Puducherry, Andaman and Nicobar Islands, and Lakshwadeep will be represented at the meeting.