In the absence of function hall, organisers of various functions are occupying roads to erect pandals, says honorary president of the colony association K. Eswar.

Vudanagar Phase-I, a serene residential colony, located at a stone’s throw from the Duvvada Railway Station and hardly 3 km from the Kurmannapalem National Highway, surrounded by lush greenery, appears to be the ideal choice of anyone planning to buy a home, at first sight.

A walk down the lanes in the colony will, however, reveal that there is more to it than meets the eye. Some of the roads have not been re-laid for over two decades, the huge water tank constructed more than two decades ago was left to gather dust and was said to have been put to use only less than a year ago and the large park has no play equipment, walking track or even ornamental plants except for a few benches.

The compound wall of the park has been partially demolished to construct a second big overhead water tank to provide drinking water to another colony developed on the other side of the track near Duvvada. It’s a different matter that this tank has not been brought to use as the contractor was not paid his dues and he left the task unfinished after completing 80 per cent of the work, a couple of years ago. May be this tank, like the first one, would be go into disuse for two decades before the authorities concerned wake up!

Vudanagar Phase-I was developed with 300 plots by VUDA during 1987-88.

“There is no hospital, bus shelter, post office, community welfare centre or function hall in the colony. The absence of either a function hall (Kalayana Mandapam) or a Community Welfare Centre in the area is making residents to partially occupy the roads to erect pandals to celebrate weddings and festivals, causing inconvenience to other road users,” says honorary president of the colony association K. Eswar.

“There are a good number of employees of Visakhapatnam Steel Plant (VSP) in the area and VSP had shifted to BSNL CUG (Closed User Group) from Airtel about six months ago. “We have been facing poor connectivity problems with BSNL and have been asking them to set up a cell tower in the area and they are yet to take action. The frequent problems encountered by BSNL cellular users are: ‘network busy’, ‘out of coverage’ and sudden disconnection and this problem is seen at the nearby Duvvada Railway Station also,” according to colony president Maturi Srinivasa Rao.

The available facilities include: banks, ATM, weekly market on Sundays, playgrounds and private schools. The area also boasts of the Visakhapatnam Special Economic Zone (VSEZ) and Vignan Engineering College located nearby.

The Duvvada Main Approach Road has been widened to 100-feet only for a short distance from the Highway but from there to Vudanagar Phase-I, it was not widened.

A drive down some of the roads in Vudanagar Phase-I after dark can turn out to be a nightmare for two-wheeler riders. The road around the park has sunk before the culvert and pebbles have surfaced on the ‘kutcha road’ adjacent to the Kusumahara Ashram.

“A few of the roads have not been blacktopped at all while most other roads have not been re-laid since they were first laid two decades ago. We represented the matter to the authorities of the Greater Visakhapatnam Municipal Corporation (GVMC) during the last two years,” says secretary of the colony association B. Varahala Babu.

“We also represented the matter through our MLA (Gajuwaka MLA Chintalapudi Venkataramaiah) on a couple of occasions. The GVMC Grievance Cell officials said they had no funds but assured us that the roads would be laid on a priority basis. I and our president Maturi Srinivasa Rao have been meeting the officials and giving them representations time and again but nothing happened,” he says.

“A water tank was constructed in the park compound to meet the drinking water needs of residents in April 1991. The water supply was, however, not given as there were only a few houses in the colony at that time. Subsequently, though the number of houses increased no efforts were made to bring the tank into use for a long time,” said Mr. Eswar.

“We used to depend on ground water initially but most of us gave up due to health problems. We got a water analysis done, which revealed high fluoride and low calcium content. We used to purchase mineral water to tide over the problem. The GVMC authorities are supplying protected drinking water to our colony only since the last eight to nine months.”

“Drinking water is being supplied in our colony on alternate days that too for only an hour. The water tank was constructed with funds from the residents but now they are depriving us of daily water supply by supplying the water to another colony on alternate days,” said Mr. Varahala Babu.

AT A GLANCE

MLA: Chintalapudi Venkataramaiah

Dial Your Commissioner: 2746300

Zone: Gajuwaka

Zonal Commissioner: Y. Srinivas: 96666 73949

Police Station: Duvvada Zone: 2517033(L & O) and 2744328 (T)

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