NEW DELHI, Jan 25: The government – governor row in Telangana that had reached the level of the government trying to curtail the governor’s right to take the salute at a grandiose Republic Day parade, ended on Wednesday with defeat for the K Chandrasekhar Rao government in the High Court.
The High Court rejected the government’s suggestion to hold only a subdued R-Day celebrations at the Raj-Bhavan and ordered that a full-fledged parade for the Republic Day be held at the regular parade ground in Hyderabad and not at the Raj-Bhavan.
The state had initially scrapped the customary parade for a second year citing Covid as the parade was cancelled due to the pandemic last year. When a programme was organised at the Raj Bhavan, the government had directed it to be curtailed. It would have made this year the second in a row when despite the lifting of anti-Covid restrictions, the Governor could not inspect the state police’s ceremonial parade and receive the guard of honour at the Parade Ground in Secunderabad.
A petition was filed in the High Court on Wednesday morning contending that the government was violating the Central circular to hold the Republic Day Parade, which was skipped by the Centre and states for two years on account of the pandemic. This time, the Central circular directed that full-fledged celebrations be organised involving students, in all the states.
The government is yet to respond to the High Court’s order.
Telangana Governor Tamilisai Soundararajan took charge in 2019, but her relations with the state government have been strained for over two years now in what appears to be a pattern in non-BJP ruled states. Last year, the Governor had hoisted the flag at Raj Bhavan on Republic Day, after the government said due to Covid protocols, the event cannot be conducted at the Parade Ground.
The tradition to send out a speech for the Governor to read also appears to have been broken this year. Reports say no speech has been sent, even though the Governor’s office reached out to the state government. The Governor is said to be upset at the developments.
Breaking with another tradition, the Governor will not give the customary joint address to both houses of legislature at the beginning of the budget session on Feb 3. This follows the controversy in Tamil Nadu where the governor RN Ravi deviated from the written speech drafted by the DMK government refusing to read out some of the pro-government paragraphs that had turned into a huge public showdown.