Sitammadhara junction is bustling with activity from the wee hours of the day
The Sitammadhara junction with an imposing statue of revolutionary leader Alluri Sitaramaraju beckons the visitors to the tranquil residential areas of Posts and Telegraphs colony and the APSEB colony. The twin colonies boast of excellent roads, underground drainage and a lot of greenery dotting the beautiful landscape with the hills in the backdrop. Most of the people are affluent and it also houses many retired people. More than the youth, the presence of retired officers is clearly visible in the early hours of the morning when all of them set out for a walk. Well dressed senior citizens, some of them in track suit and white flannels were seen meeting in groups after their hour long walk. From the wee hours of the day, the Sitammadhara junction is full of life.
The day starts with morning walkers followed by hundreds of daily wage labourers and masonry workers congregating at the junction waiting for builders to hire them for the day’s work. A paradox is clearly evident. As soon as the affluent looking morning walkers disappear from the junction double road, the hundreds of labourers surface. Beyond the affluent colonies at the foot of the Sitammadhara hills live the economically weaker sections of the society. It is these people who work as casual labourers who capture the attention of anyone who comes to the hotels and tea stall to have a cup of coffee or tea. The scenario resembles a shandy or a fair where people come to buy essentials but here the labourers are for hire for the day. The oldest school or the colony residents is the St.Francis School, popularly known as SFS School. The school had been serving the residents of the region for more than two decades.
The colony is spread in nearly 20 acres of land with about 300 houses, apartment dwellings and about 5000 residents. A maddening stillness pervades throughout the day. The evening again turns lively as soon as the men return to their homes. A long row of pushcarts which are mobile fast food counters set up shop in the evening and offer tasty treats. There is lot of demand for noodles, hot chapathis and hot chats from 5 p.m to 10 p.m. Of late, several curry points have surfaced and people are seen carrying curry parcels to their homes, an evidence of changing lifestyles.
Surprisingly the residents of APSEB colony and P&T colony say they have no civic problems, no complaints and life is happy and peaceful. In a way these colonies are said to be models of development. The residents welfare associations are very active. They have taken keen interest in development of three parks, greenery and in keeping their colony very clean. It is very difficult to find garbage or trash anywhere. Life revolves around the welfare associations here and the activities conducted by them including religious, cultural and social programs. They eat, they spend time together and women socialize developing strong bonds with the neighbourhood.
APSEB Colony Welfare Association president G.Sathyanarayana Murthy says that the colony has three parks. Two parks are managed by the APSEB Welfare Association and the other jointly managed by the P&T Residents Welfare Association (RWA) and the APSEB Association. There is excellent sanitation and the sanitary workers are always available at the beck and call of local residents to attend to the colony needs. The colony residents also treat the sanitary workers well and often provide hospitality to them. The colony is the home to two political leaders including Member of Parliament Sabbam Hari and MLA Malla Vijaya Prasad.
However the colony comes under Assembly constituency jurisdiction of MLA Velagapudi Rama Krishna. The colony residents live as a closely knit family meeting often for religious ceremonies and poojas frequently and even during festival occasions. The colony people say that under ground water quality is good and sweet and every one uses the water for cooking purposes although the GVMC supplies drinking water to them.
The associations organise deepavali, dasara and other festivals and also national festivals including Independence Day and Republic Day. They also organise free medical camps for the poor every year. The common complaint is that there are no quality restaurants in the place despite being home to the affluent class.
The only eateries are the make shift mobile fast food points which appear and disappear within hours. There are three shuttle courts in two parks managed by APSEB Welfare Association.