A panoramic view of the Telangana capital. File photo
The Telangana government has dismissed the suggestions of the Home Ministry to form a joint force comprising police of the new state and residuary Andhra Pradesh to control the law and order in Hyderabad and set up a special cell to deal with hate crimes there.
The K. Chandrasekhar Rao government, which is at loggerheads with the Centre over Polavaram Bill, has sent a missive to the Home Ministry rejecting its proposal to set up the joint force comprising policemen from Andhra Pradesh and Telangana for maintenance of law and order in Hyderabad and Cyberabad.
“The common capital area is an integral part of Telangana state. There cannot be any joint force in the common capital area as law and order is a state subject and the police officers of another state cannot have any jurisdiction here,” Principal Secretary (General Administration Department) of the Telangana government, Ajay Mishra conveyed to the Home Ministry in a communication.
Following the bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh, Hyderabad has been made the joint capital of the two states for 10 years and their Governor has been entrusted with the responsibility of maintenance of law and order in Hyderabad.
On June 4, the Home Ministry sought the opinion of the Telangana government on the proposal for amendment of the Business Transaction Rules of Telangana.
Opposing the move, TRS leader in Lok Sabha Jithender Reddy told PTI that they have already raised the issue with Home Minister Rajnath Singh who promised to review it.
He said it will be “gross injustice” to people of Telangana if such overwhelming power is given to the Governor.
“We will oppose it tooth and nail and cannot allow this to happen,” he said.
The Telangana government has also rejected the Ministry’s proposal to set up a special cell headed by an officer not below the rank of IGP in both the Commissionerates and with a senior officer in the office of Ranga Reddy district to deal with hate crimes and crimes related to extortion or any other specified crime and ensure speedy trial.
“An officer will be designated in the office of the Director General of Police to deal with issues mentioned,” the Telangana government letter said.
There have been reports of spurt of alleged hate crimes and extortion calls in Hyderabad and its adjoining areas following the bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh. The reports suggested that most of the victims had roots in Seemandhra region.
The Centre has proposed that police force of Hyderabad and Cyberabad Commissionerates shall be a joint entity comprising elements from Andhra and Telangana on fair share basis in supervisory posts like Deputy Commissioners, Additional Commissioners and Commissioners.
Reddy claimed there has not been even single incident of assault on people from Seemandhra region.
According to the proposed amendment, the Governor shall have the power to call for any record or information or decision of the Council of Ministers or any authority relating to the responsibilities envisaged under the Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Act 2014.
It also said the Commissioners of Police and Superintendent of Police of Ranga Reddy district shall furnish periodical reports of law and order to the Governor in addition to special reports on all grave crimes in the common capital area.
However, the Telangana government made it clear that the state Government will only furnish periodical reports on law and order to the Governor through Council of Ministers.
The Home Ministry proposed that for matters falling under law and order, internal security and security of vital installations, as well as the two Police Commissionerates currently operating in Hyderabad and Cyberabad and Commissionerates, and for Ranga Reddy district, the Home Secretary of Telangana shall brief the Governor as well as on those issues that have special significance.
The Governor may convey his views which shall be placed before the appropriate authority. Governor’s advice shall prevail.
Rejecting the proposed amendment, the Telangana government said it will provide required reports to Governor only through the Council of Ministers.
The Centre proposed that in case of exigencies, the Governor can call for a report or assessment from the Telangana government upon which he can ask the state government specifically for reallocation of the staff on a temporary basis in case of any contingency.
“State Government does not agree with this. Reallocation of the staff has to be done in accordance with the provisions of A.P. Reorganisation Act,” the state government conveyed.
The Home Ministry has suggested that the management and allocation of buildings to all the departments of both the successor states shall be decided by the governor on the recommendations of the committee of senior officers constituted for the purpose keeping in view the requirement and availability of accommodation and the decision of the governor shall be final.
The Telangana government rebutted it and said according to rules, the governor has to take decision in consultation with the Council of Ministers of Telangana and the Council of Ministers cannot be substituted by a Committee of Officers.
The Centre proposed that to ensure the safety of property of the common capital of Hyderabad, the collectors of Hyderabad and Ranga Reddy districts as well as the Commissioner of Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation shall set up grievance cells for the redressal of grievances and affected parties shall have the right to represent themselves.
Besides, the governor can issue necessary directions to the officials of the Telangana government for the protection of the property rights of the aggrieved.
However, the Telangana government said the officer designated in DGP office will deal with this function.
“The state government is of the view that as per the basic principle as given in article 163 of the Constitution, which is also reiterated in the wording of Section 8(3) of A.P. Reorganisation Act, the governor has to function with the aid and advice of the Council of Ministers. The basic Transaction Rules proposed vide the reference given above do not conform to these basic principles,” the state government communication to the Home Ministry said.
Telangana is facing a day-long bandh on Saturday called in protest against the passage in Lok Sabha of a Bill to transfer some villages of the newly-created state to Andhra Pradesh to aid the construction of the Polavaram project.