HYDERABAD: A division bench of the Hyderabad High Court on Friday made it clear that the “Constitution does not permit” a separate high court for Andhra Pradesh in Hyderabad, which is an integral part of the Telangana State, and also ruled that it will continue to be the common high court for both Telangana and Andhra Pradesh till a new high court for the latter was constituted.
The bench, comprising Chief Justice Kalyan Jyoti Sengupta and Justice PV Sanjay Kumar, delivered the verdict on petitions filed by T Dhangopal Rao, a social activist of the city, the AP High Court Sadhana Committee and others, seeking separate high courts for AP and Telangana.
The bench appreciated the gesture of the Telangana government in coming forward to provide logistic and infrastructural support for the formation of separate high courts but held that the Telangana government had no role to play in the creation of a separate high court for AP.
The bench ruled, “It is for the AP government to provide infrastructure and identify the place to set up its own high court. Just earmarking certain area for the new court by the government is not enough... it has to indicate the place where it has to be located. As soon as the AP government indicates the place, the high court will initiate further steps for establishment of the court.”
The bench asked the Central government to release funds as mentioned in the AP Reorganisation Act expeditiously. “We hope that the Centre will release funds for creation and construction of a new high court as promised under the AP Reorganisation Act-2014 as early as possible”, it observed.
The bench further said Section 51(3) of the State Reorganisation Act 1956 allows the AP government to set up circuit benches of the high court if it desires, either in Tirupati or Visakhapatnam, but those benches will be functioning under the jurisdiction of the common high court till a separate high court is constituted for the State.
The bench had earlier sought responses from both the state governments and the Union of India and also requested the assistance of two senior counsels as amicus curiae. Several advocates impleaded themselves to present different view points on the issue.