Blueprint for special status to H-K ready

Blueprint for special status to H-K ready

High-powered Board to identify disparities in development, suggest grants

Implementation of special status for the Hyderabad-Karnataka region has come closer with the State government readying a draft notification specifying the composition and functions of a high-powered Hyderabad-Karnataka Area Development Board.

One of the first tasks of the Board, which will have constitutional status, is to identify disparities in development in different sectors in the Hyderabad-Karnataka region and suggest the quantum of grants required to bring the region on a par with the rest of the State.

The recommendation of the panel, after it is vetted by the Governor, will have to be mandatorily incorporated into the annual budget proposals by the State government.
The parliament had recently passed the Constitution (118th Amendment) Bill, 2012, to insert a new Article 371-J to provide special recognition for the six backward districts of Hyderabad-Karnataka region - Gulbarga, Yadgir, Raichur, Bidar, Koppal and Bellary.
Article 371-J

Article 371-J provides for establishing a separate development board and equitable allocation of funds for the development of the region. It also provides for quota in public employment through local cadres and reservation in education and vocational training institutions for those who belong to the region by birth or by domicile. 

According to the draft ‘Development Boards for Hyderabad-Karnataka Region Order 2013,’ a copy of which is available with Deccan Herald, the 13-member Board will have one member of parliament and three MLAs whose electoral constituencies lie within the jurisdiction of the region. The government will nominate the members on a two-year rotation basis.

The panel will also have the president of one of the Zilla Panchayats of the six districts, again nominated on a two-year rotation basis. Among others, it will have five experts, one each from the fields of planning, finance, irrigation and public works, agriculture and industry, education and employment. The draft, which will be placed before the State Cabinet soon, specifies that the Board will have to assess the impact of various development efforts in clearing backlog and in achieving overall development within the region. The panel will have to meet at least once every three months.

The High-powered Committee for Redressal of Regional Imbalances headed by D M Nanjundappa had classified that, of the 39 most backward taluks in the State, 21 were in the Hyderabad-Karnataka region.

Section 21 of the Order mandates that the funds or outlays specified by the Board (which will have to be forwarded to the Governor) will have to be reflected in the Annual Financial Statement (budget). An official level Implementation Committee will be constituted to monitor the overall development activities in the region. Once the Board is constituted, the present Hyderabad-Karnataka Development Board Act, 1991, will be repealed.

Definition of domicile

The State government is also working towards defining “domicile” by birth, education and marriage for providing reservation in education and employment to the local population in the region.

Government sources said a cabinet sub-committee will soon be constituted to ensure early implementation of the special status for the region. Mapping of all posts and institutions for reservation will also be taken up, the sources added.