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Odisha To Move SC Against Andhra’s Panchayat Poll Announcement In Kotia Villages

Bhubaneswar: The Odisha government has braced up to move the Supreme Court with a writ petition challenging Andhra Pradesh’ announcement to conduct panchayat election in three villages of Kotia in Koraput district.

In a letter to the Advocate on Record (AOR) Sibo Sankar Mishra, the deputy secretary of Law Department Bhagaban Nayak stated, “You (Mishra) are engaged to file Writ Petition before the Supreme Court challenging the notification of State Election Commission, Andhra Pradesh to hold panchayat election in three villages of Kotia which are within the territory of Odisha.”

Mishra is the AOR Supreme Court lawyer empanelled by the government of Odisha to appear for it in cases at the apex court.

The Revenue department and Disaster Management department has been asked to provide Mishra all relevant documents for filing the petition.

The State will produce documents in the SC over State formation, border demarcation of 1955 and elections to local bodies.

Odisha claimed that Andra Pradesh has taken unilateral decision on panchayat poll even as the border dispute involving Kotia is sub-judice in the Supreme Court.

It is worth mentioning that Kotia dispute is a long pending border issue between Andhra Pradhesh and Odisha. Both the States have been claiming sovereignty over the area, which consist of 27 small tribal hamlets on the border.

Andhra Pradesh has plans to hold panchayat elections in three villages-Talaganjeipadar, Phatuseneri and Phagunaseneri of Kotia on February 13 and 17. The process for filing of nomination papers concluded on Thursday.

The neighbouring State has listed these three villages of Odisha’s Koraput district under Salur Mandal in Vizianagaram.

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