No hike in Assembly seats in Andhra Pradesh, Telangana till 2026

VIJAYAWADA: There will be no increase in the number of legislative assembly seats in the states of Andhra Pradeshand Telangana till 2026, Union minister of state for home affairs, Hansraj Gangaram Ahir, told the Lok Sabha on Tuesday . He was responding to a question raised by Rajahmundry MP M Murali Mohan and Kotha Prabhakar Reddy , MP from Medak.
The procedure, as per the rules, can be taken up only after the 2026 census, Ahir said. He, however, added that another way of doing it was by amending Article 170 of the Constitution.

"This issue (increase in assembly seats) was taken up with the ministry of law and justice, who then sought the opinion of the attorney general on the matter. The AG said that as per Article 170(3) of the Constitution, the total number of assem bly seats in the two states cannot be readjusted till the first census is published in 2026. Therefore, unless and until Article 170 is amended to bring up in line with Section 26, the increase in the number of seats cannot be given effect," Ahir told the Lok Sabha.

The AP Reorganisation Act, 2014 contains a section that says the number of seats in assemblies of both AP and Telangana will be increased from 175 to 225 and 119 to 153 respectively .

Banking their hopes on the increase in the number of seats, the ruling parties of the two states, Telugu Desam and Telangana Rashtra Samithi, have been encouraging defections from other parties, assuring assembly tickets to the defectors. While TDP encouraged many YSRC MLAs to join the party , the TRS in Telangana followed suit by facilitating the defection of TDP legislators.