Says Irrigation Department is reluctant to part with its land at Seetammavari Paadalu

Andhra Pradesh Tourism Development Corporation’s (APTDC) ambitious ropeway project will have to wait for a while due to certain hurdles, says the Tourism Corporation’s Executive Director (Projects) Madhusudan.

“The much-awaited ropeway project from Indrakeeladri (Kanakadurga Temple) to Seetammavari Paadalu on Guntur side of River Krishna cannot be taken up until the Irrigation Department agrees to part with the land we are seeking at Seetammavari Paadalu for construction of a base station,” Mr. Madhusudhan told The Hindu on Sunday.

He said the departmental higher-ups had called for a meeting a couple of months ago on the issue. “But the Irrigation Department said it would not be able to spare the proposed land. But for this one hurdle, a lot of private players are ready to take up the project,” he said.

Unable to break the deadlock with the Irrigation department, at one point, the Special Chief Secretary, Tourism and Culture, Chandana Khan, had asked the district Tourism officials to explore the possibility of shifting the venue of the base station of the ropeway to Haritha Berm Park at Bhavanipuram. But the APTDC realised that it is technically not feasible.

“The project involves use of entirely new technology and escalating the gondolas of the ropeway to the highest level is going to be a complicated task,” he explained.

While Irrigation officials maintain that they intend to make use of the proposed land for construction of a sluice, sources said the department has security concerns, as it feels that it is not advisable to have a regular tourist spot at the venue.

The tourism department is seeking one and a half acres of Irrigation land at Seetammavari Paadalu 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.

The project, conceived years ago, is still in the cold-storage.

Mr. Madhusudan, meanwhile, said the Bhavani island will sport a new look by Dasara. “The tender process is on and a sum of Rs. 2 crore will be invested to refurbish the existing cottages, introduce fun games and add new adventure activities.” he said.

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