BHUBANESWAR: Leader of Opposition (LoP) in Odisha Assembly Pradipta Naik on Saturday requested Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy to maintain status quo on the disputed border villages as per the ruling of the Supreme Court.
In a letter to Reddy, Naik said holding panchayat elections in some of the Kotia villages of Koraput district and attempt to conduct polls in other villages of Ganjam, Gajapati, Rayagada and Malkangiri districts by three district administrations of Andhra Pradesh not only violates the apex court order but also goes against the spirit of the federal structure of the country.
“This is not only against the spirit of the Constitution, but also against the spirit of the federal structure of the country. The activities of Andhra Government are going against the spirit of the Supreme Court ruling on 1968 to maintain the status quo,” the letter said.
Terming it a grave Constitutional crisis, Naik said Andhra Pradesh has violated the status quo order, which was passed on the basis of consent of both states. Asserting that Kotia gram panchayat has always been a part of Odisha, Naik said the demand of Andhra Pradesh government that these areas belong to them is baseless.
He said prior to the creation of Odisha as a separate province on linguistic basis on April 1, 1936, villages of Kotia panchayat were part of Jeypore estate. This was clearly mentioned in the Constitution of Odisha order, 1936 published in the Gazette of India on March 19 the same year.
Stating that Andhra Pradesh has been claiming some villages under Kotia gram panchayat belonging to Odisha and renamed them violating the Supreme Court order, Naik said this shows the complete expansionist mindset of Andhra government.