Hyderabad: The chief ministers have paved the way, but the chief secretaries need to find the time to walk it.
Telangana’s K Chandrashekar Rao and Andhra Pradesh’s YS Jagan Mohan Reddy appear keen to address the reorganisation complications shared by the two southern states. But after the chief ministers taking the initiative to address these issues amicably through mutual cooperation, Telangana chief secretary Somesh Kumar and his Andhra counterpart, Neelam Sahani, have not been able to meet due to a scheduling snag.
On Monday, Reddy and Rao had a meeting for about six hours at the Telangana CM’s camp office-cum-official residence in Hyderabad and, as per a press release, discussed issues concerning the two states and also local and national political situation. The two leaders reportedly also told the chief secretaries of their respective states to convene an official meeting soon to resolve the pending issues of the institutions listed in IX and X schedule of the AP Reorganisation Act.
However, the proposed meeting could not take place on Thursday as Sahani expressed her inability to attend the deliberations owing to “pressing engagements”. A new date is expected to be communicated soon.
The reorganisation became necessary after Telangana was carved out of Andhra Pradesh in 2014, with Hyderabad as its historic permanent capital.
Sahani asked senior bureaucrat L Premchandra Reddy to step in and he held discussions on the pending issues with his Telangana counterpart K Ramakrishna Rao during a three-hour meeting in the presence of Somesh Kumar. However, not much came out of it.
According to sources, Kumar is keen on another meeting and the date and venue will be decided after Sahani’s nod.
When the two chief ministers met, they reached a consensus on transferring Godavari river water to the irrigated area served under Krishna River. The two stated they felt that farmers of Rayalaseema in Andhra Pradesh and Telangana's Mahbubnagar and Nalgonda districts, whose irrigation needs are served under the Krishna, are facing shortage of water in view of inconsistent availability of water in the river.
Sources said after Reddy explained to Rao the social and political circumstances under which he is mulling the idea to develop Vishakhapatnam and Kurnool along with Amaravati as part of his three-capital formula, the Telangana CM gave him some suggestions on the matter.
Rao also reportedly cautioned first-time chief minister Reddy of the ongoing agitation by farmers of Amaravati who are protesting against the move. The farmers had donated lands during the previous Telugu Desam Party (TDP) government led by N Chandrababu Naidu for the development of the capital city.
According to sources, it might be possible for Sahani to find time after the assembly session slated to begin on January 20. The two chief secretaries have to take a call on key issues and initiatives to address the issues regarding further division of assets and liabilities, power, staff, funds, etc.(With agency inputs)