Andhra Assembly

LC abolition: Statutory resolution sent to Centre for follow up action

A day after the state Assembly passed it unanimously, the Andhra Pradesh government on Tuesday despatched to the Union Government, the statutory resolution seeking abolition of the Legislative Council, for follow-up action.

In accordance with Article 169 (1) of the Constitution, Parliament has to enact an enabling legislation to abolish the Legislative Council.

The AP Legislative Assembly on Monday night passed the statutory resolution seeking to abolish the state Legislative Council after the YS Jagan Mohan Reddy government failed to get two crucial Bills on its plans to have three capitals for the state cleared by the Upper House last week.

All 133 members present in the 175-member House, when the division vote was taken at 6 pm, voted in favour and the resolution was adopted unanimously. “The Legislative Assembly of the state of Andhra Pradesh resolves that the Legislative Council of the state be abolished, the statutory resolution read.

State Chief Secretary Nilam Sawhney formally forwarded the resolution to the Centre, requesting that appropriate action be taken in the matter, official sources said. The Union Cabinet has to first take up the matter and decide whether or not to go ahead with the Council abolition as sought by the Andhra Pradesh government. If the Cabinet agrees, the issue will come before Parliament for necessary enactment, as per procedure.

Incidentally, Parliaments Standing Committee on Law and Personnel had in 2013 recommended that a national policy be evolved for creation or abolition of state Legislative
Councils. The Committee, headed by Santaram Naik, had stressed on the need for a national policy so that the second chamber (of Legislature) does not depend on the “whims and fancies” of any newly-elected government.

“The status of the second chamber cannot be temporary in nature, depending on the mood of the government of the day. Once created, the Council cannot be abolished at the whims and fancy of a newly-elected government in the state, the Standing Committee had said in its report.

“There are requests from several states for abolition of the Council pending with the Centre. They have not been moving for many years now and it is unlikely that APs resolution will be taken up,” Vijayawada MP Kesineni Srinivas observed in a tweet.

Unless Prime Minister Narendra Modi or Union Home Minister Amit Shah took it up as a special case, APs request for abolition of the Legislative Council might not come to Parliament, the TDP MP noted.

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