'Cong Mins, MPs May Vote Against AP Reorganisation Bill'

Union Minister of State for Commerce Daggubati Purandeswari today indicated that Congress ministers and MPs from Seemandhra would vote against the AP Reorganisation Bill-2013 in Parliament if the Centre did not concede their demands over protecting the interests of people of their region.

She shot off a letter to the effect to Congress president Sonia Gandhi.

"We have fought extensively for protecting the interests of Seemandhra in the event of the bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh. If the Centre does not concede our demands in this regard, we may vote against the Bill," Purandeswari told reporters.

"I have written a letter to Sonia Gandhi requesting that the concerns of people of Seemandhra be addressed ahead of the bifurcation," she said.

The Centre's stand on Polavaram multi-purpose project and Hyderabad had "immensely pained us", the Union minister said.

Entire Polavaram project should be in Andhra region, she said, referring to the demand for merging the Bhadrachalam division with coastal Andhra.

"The Centre's stand on this has pained us. Polavaram should be in Andhra region only," she added.

Purandeswari also opposed the proposal of a common capital. "There is no provision in the Constitution for a common capital," she pointed out.

"Making Hyderabad the common capital meant insulting the chief minister of (residuary) Andhra Pradesh. How could the chief minister govern his state sitting in Hyderabad," she wondered.

On the Centre's promise of setting up of institutions of higher learning like IIT and IIM in residuary Andhra Pradesh in the event of division, the Union minister observed there was no clarity of allocation of funds.

"It's the Centre's responsibility to provide an assurance to students of Seemandhra on higher education opportunities in the event of the state's bifurcation," she added.

Emerging story. Watch this space for updates as more details come in
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