Hyderabad to be common capital for 5 more years?

With just five days left until the 10th anniversary of the bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh to form Telangana, discussions about continuing Hyderabad as the common capital for both states are gaining momentum.

According to Section 5 of the AP Reorganisation Act, 2014, Hyderabad was designated as the common capital of Telangana and Andhra Pradesh for a period not exceeding 10 years, starting from June 2, 2014, the official date of bifurcation.

After this 10-year period, Hyderabad is to remain the capital of Telangana, while Andhra Pradesh is to establish a new capital.

However, there is growing speculation among Telangana activists that the Centre might extend Hyderabad's status as the common capital for at least five more years. Readmore!

YSR Congress Party leader Y V Subba Reddy first ignited this debate by suggesting an extension of the common capital period by 10 more years.

Bharat Rashtra Samithi leaders, including K T Rama Rao (KTR) and T Harish Rao, also raised the issue during the recent Lok Sabha elections.

KTR suggested that the Centre might declare Hyderabad a Union Territory to place it under BJP-led NDA control, while Harish Rao alleged a conspiracy by some parties to maintain Hyderabad as the common capital beyond the June 2 deadline.

Harish Rao further speculated that the demand for a common capital might gain traction if Telugu Desam Party president N Chandrababu Naidu, who has an alliance with the BJP in Andhra Pradesh, comes to power, and if Telangana chief minister A Revanth Reddy, a close associate of Naidu, supports the idea.

However, the NDA government is currently unable to take any immediate action on either the common capital demand or the Union Territory proposal due to the enforcement of the model code of conduct.

If the NDA wins the upcoming elections, with counting set for June 4, it might consider the demand after June 6, when the election code ends.

Proponents of extending Hyderabad's status as the common capital argue that many unresolved issues between the two states can be more effectively addressed if Hyderabad continues to serve as a common link.

If the NDA government retains power, it will need to amend the Constitution to extend Hyderabad's status as the common capital.

This amendment might also address the Telangana government's request to de-merge five villages given to Andhra Pradesh during the bifurcation, sources said.

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