New Delhi/Bhubaneswar: The Andhra Pradesh government has submitted its response in the contempt plea filed by the Odisha government against the neighbouring state for alleged violation of status quo in the disputed Kotia region of Koraput district stating that it has taken over certain villages belonging to Odisha.
After the Supreme Court served a notice to AP to file a response in this regard, the district Collector of Vizianagaram in AP, through the affidavit, stated that there is no question of contempt by Andhra Pradesh as no direction was passed by the Court. "There was no direction that was passed by the Court. There is, therefore, no question of committing a contempt," it mentioned.
Andhra Pradesh has been consistently holding elections in the Ganjaybadra, Pattuchennuru and Paguluchennuru villages. The aforesaid villages presently fall under Araku Parliamentary Constituency and in Saluru Assembly Constituency in Andhra.
Elections have consistently been held to Lok Sabha and the State Assembly in these villages since 1952. So far as the local body elections are concerned, Andhra Pradesh has conducted local body elections in these three villages since the inception of Panchayat Raj Act, maintained AP government in the affidavit.
The respondent further submitted that even in 2006 and 2013, elections were held to the Panchayats. The affidavit mentioned the name of the villages along with the elected Sarpanchs and the number of voters during the 2006 and 2013 polls.
The Andhra Pradesh government stated it has been duly administrating its own territories and has not infringed upon Odisha's territory, and in order to make its position clear, it has also shared documents to reflect that the areas fall within the jurisdiction of AP and not Odisha.
The Apex Court has fixed the next hearing in the matter on February 19 (tomorrow).