Irrigation Department has refused to part with the land near Seetammavari Paadalu, says APTDC official

A prolonged state of dilly-dallying followed by a logjam has ultimately resulted in shelving of the Andhra Pradesh Tourism Development Corporation’s (APTDC) ambitious ropeway project.

Conceived over a decade ago with an objective to blend faith and amusement by launching a ropeway project from Kanaka Durga temple atop Indrakeeladri hill to Seetammavari Paadalu on Guntur side of River Krishna, the Tourism officials have been trying in vain to thrash out a solution to the string of hurdles that impeded execution of the cable car project.

Irrigation Department land

“For now, the project is shelved. The Irrigation Department, which owns the land near Seetammavari Paadalu, the venue we propose to use as the base station, has refused to part with the land. Future plans to expand the sluice gates besides apprehensions of the Irrigation officials over security concerns are cited as the reasons but nothing concrete has come out so far from their side,” said APTDC Executive Director, Projects, Madhusudan.

Mr. Madhusudan said a Kolkata-based consultant company offered to take up the project at an alternative site, but it was a costly proposition. “Moreover, there are other hurdles that may pose fresh problems,” he said. The project, if implemented, could help regulate pilgrim rush to the temple atop the hill besides providing entertainment to those opting for the cable car view.

But the seemingly jinxed project has failed to make headway despite best efforts of the successive officials at the helm of affairs of the Tourism Corporation to execute the project.

The tourism wing has asked for one-and-half acres of Irrigation land to set up a lower station, vehicle parking area, and to accommodate other features like a lobby, a generator room, washrooms, and refreshment stalls among other things. But with the APTDC-Irrigation department stalemate continuing endlessly, officials of the tourism department seem to have almost given up hopes. “We are ready to implement the project whenever the Irrigation department hands over the land,” said Mr. Madhusudan.

Since that is unlikely to happen, it is easy to surmise that the ropeway project has been shelved.