Madras may answer Andhra's Hyderabad question - The New Indian Express

Madras may answer Andhra's Hyderabad question

Published: 24th August 2013 08:31 AM

Last Updated: 24th August 2013 09:07 AM

Here is a report published in the March 3, 1953 issue of the Indian Express, in response to recommendations made by Mr Justice Wanchoo on the separation of Andhra from the Composite Madras State.

(Mr Wanchoo is understood to have expressed his view that no amendment of Constitution is necessary either for locating Andhra capital temporarily in Madras City for three to five years or to extend the jurisdiction of the residuary state’s High Court to Andhra).

Referring to this, 32 Members of Parliament representing the non-Andhra portions of Madras State and representing all parties have submitted a memorandum to Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru against considering Madras as capital for both Tamil Nadu and Andhra states.

In their representation, they mentioned that Andhras have been demanding: a) City of Madras should become part of Andhra (b) alternatively, it should be made Chief Commissioner’s province and capital of both Andhra and residuary Madras state should be located there.

The MPs pointed out that the city of Madras is preponderantly Tamil in its population and taking all non-Andhras together, the population of Andhras is a small minority. In fact, in the recent elections to Madras state assembly, in respect of George Town area, which is in the heart of the city and which contains largest concentration of Andhra population, the election was fought on the straight issue of claims of Andhras to Madras city and Mr Prakasam, the Andhra candidate lost his deposit.

All this indicate that the feelings of non-Andhras, particularly the Tamils, if the Andhra capital is located in the city of Madras, could be considerably exacerbated.

The next point to be considered is, if the report submitted by Justice Mr Wanchoo that Madras should be guest capital of Andhra state, the city being within the jurisdiction of authorities of the residuary Madras state is correct, with the feelings between Andhras and non-Andhras being as indicated above, the problem of preserving law and order will be a difficult one for the residuary Madras state.

If members of Andhra Legislature or officers of Andhra government are in any way attacked by the people of residuary Madras state or vice-versa, the responsibility on the residuary state will be an onerous one indeed.

It is possible that in view of the fact that Andhras are still persisting in their claim to Madras city or for converting it into a Chief Commissioner province, they will carry on an agitation in Madras city. In that contingency,  what is the attitude of the government of the residuary state to be in respect of putting down such an agitation. Such a decision as has been purported to be recommended by Mr Wanchoo will be fraught with all kinds of difficulties which are, at the moment, not possible to envisage.

Assuming that the above points are not of material consequence, the third factor is what are the sanctions which can compel the Andhras to leave Madras city and choose another capital in their own area after a period of time. Since the Constitution does not envisage the location of the capital of one state within the jurisdiction of another, the Constitution provides no power to the Parliament of India to compel any state to change its capital whether it is within its own jurisdiction or outside.

And if such a contingency should arise, and if authorities of the new state refuse to budge, it will be almost impossible to make them leave Madras unless it be that the central government is prepared to wink at the extra judicial methods that the authorities of the residuary state might take to achieve that end.

However, peacefully the Andhra province might be brought into being, it would undoubtedly take sometime before the strained feelings of people of two states die down and this culmination could only be achieved by excluding rigorously all points of friction.

If this recommendation ascribed to Mr Wanchoo is implemented, the inauguration of two states would start with a first class quarrel with implications, all of which could not be envisaged. We, therefore, strongly feel that any capital of new Andhra state, whether permanent, provisional or temporary should be situated within the limits of the proposed state and that all political agencies belonging to Andhra state should be located within that state. The Andhra High Court should also have its principal seat within the state.

One other point that we would like to bring to your notice at this stage is that there is in TamilNad, a very large Telugu speaking population which is expected to be anything between 30 and 40 lakhs.

 They are living now at peace and amity with the rest of the population and the implementation of any such unfortunate decision as has been ascribed to Mr Wanchoo will not only make the city of Madras a battleground but will also project these troubles into the areas in TamilNad where a large Andhra population is now living at peace with their neighbours.

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