Many project Visakhapatnam as natural choice
With the bifurcation of the State putting an end to Samaikyandhra agitation, the talk of new capital for the residual State of Andhra Pradesh has generated unprecedented interest in various quarters in North Andhra.
With infrastructure in place to qualify as an international city with good connectivity compared to all other places, many want the location of the new capital in Visakhapatnam. At various fora, supporters of ‘Vizag as capital’ have been demanding identification of Madhurawada, Kapulauppada, Pardesipalem, Atchutapuram or Tagarapuvalasa as suitable places to locate Secretariat, Assembly and quarters for officials.
Vizag Development Council, Confederation of Indian Industry, Vizagapatam Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Rushikonda IT Park, Uttarandhra Rakshana Vedika, Vizag Citizens’ Forum and Uttarandhra Journalists’ Front have termed Vizag as the most suitable choice for the new capital.
“We have everything that a capital needs. It is also strategically located. It has good brand name as an industrial city with two ports, an international airport and several projects with massive investments in the Petroleum, Chemical and Petrochemical Investment Region (PCPIR),” CII Vizag zone chairman G. Sambasiva Rao, told The Hindu.
The capital talk has become part of animated discussions at various places. Reports seeking other places as capital ignoring the importance of Vizag have also annoyed certain people. “Raipur, Ranchi and Dehradun got a shot in the arm after they were made new capitals in the three States carved out during NDA regime. Any independent observer will certainly vote for Vizag going by its ready-made infrastructure if he makes a study on probable places suggested for capital,” P. Vishnu Kumar Raju, president of Vizag Development Council, said.
The realty sector, which was in slump for past several months due to agitations against bifurcation, has also pinned high hopes on gaining buoyancy if the new capital is located in the city.
“We are hopeful that real estate business will experience a boom time if Vizag is made the capital,” a senior executive of a corporate realty firm, said.
Rushikonda IT Park Association vice-president O. Naresh Kumar said they would launch a campaign, online and offline to gather support to make Vizag the capital.
He pointed out that Vizag being the largest city in the new State, good linkage and rich land bank at the disposal of APIIC (1,650 acres allotted and later cancelled for development of Knowledge City at Kapulauppada) is readily available.