Kotia issue: Odisha's LoP urges Andhra Pradesh CM to maintain status quo

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Bhubaneswar, Feb 21 (PTI) Leader of Opposition in Odisha Assembly P K Naik has urged Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy to respect the spirit of co- operative federal structure of the nation and maintain status quo in border areas ordered by the Supreme Court.

The senior BJP leader in a letter to Reddy on Saturday alleged that Andhra Pradesh's Vizianagaram district administration not only conducted rural polls in the Kotia region of Odisha's Koraput district, but also tried to hold elections in some villages of Rayagada district.

Naik in the letter also alleged that Andhra Pradesh's Srikakulam district administration also tried to conduct polls in some villages of Ganjam and Gajapati districts and Vishakapatnam district administration in some villages of Malkangiri district.

The Leader of Opposition in Odisha Assembly alleged that Andhra Pradesh has violated the status quo order, which was passed by the Supreme Court on the basis of consent of both states.

'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 in 1968 to maintain status quo,' Naik said in the letter.

The BJP leader, who hails from the Kalahandi district, said that Kotia gram panchayat has always been a part of the history of Odisha. The Andhra Pradesh government's demand that these areas belong to them is 'baseless', he said Naik said both Andhra and Odisha have a very strong cultural relationship for thousand of years. 'We should carry forward our relationship not fighting for the lands,' he said.

The Leader of Opposition also requested the Andhra Pradesh chief minister to instruct the three district administrations to obey the Supreme Court ruling and respect the spirit of the cooperative federal structure of the nation.

PTI AAM RG RG