Nestled between the industrial Nacharam area and the Warangal highway, Boduppal village has become the nerve centre of real estate activity in the last one decade. Agricultural lands have disappeared, and so have most farmers, though a few still hold on to their land pieces, negating the temptation of real estate cash flow.
The face of Boduppal has changed completely now, and it wears an urban look. Poor roads, absence of drainage facility and insufficient drinking water, however, continue to project its village image. When the decision to merge the village to the GHMC came, there was strong opposition from a section of villagers. But, a few support the idea, citing the benefits the GHMC would bring in. Apprehensions of spiralling taxes under the GHMC regime and strict norms for construction of houses are playing on the minds of the people who oppose it. “Taxes will be doubled, and the GHMC norms will increase the burden,” says Venudhar Reddy, a teacher. He built a house recently with some savings and loans. Bhavani, who works for a medical transcription company, says merger is likely to bring in better facilities what with a huge pool of money it gets from various sources. “The Gram Panchayat doesn’t have sufficient funds, and there is no way it can access funds needed to improve infrastructure facilities,” she says.
These are all people who have come from outside and made Boduppal their home. But, people who have resided in the village for several years feel that their independence has been snatched away. Sekhar, a private sector employee, says the village will lose its identity under the GHMC.
“Our voice will be lost in the absence of ward members and sarpanches who are now easily accessible,” he says. Prabhakar, managing director of Angel Constructions, says there is still time for the village to be merged to the GHMC. As a builder, he feels permissions will not come easily in the GHMC unlike Gram Panchayats, thus hitting construction activity.
Former sarpanch Pogula Narsimha Reddy has a different view. “Those opposing the idea mostly are politicians who are worried about their political future,” he argues. He feels the village has grown in size, and it is better if it is part of the GHMC that will control the chaos and haphazard growth.”
Mr. Reddy does agree that people fear a rise in taxes but says they can also be assured of better facilities, and ultimately it will help the village take a new shape.