GVMC had failed to provide basic amenities to 32 grama panchayats

Visakha East MLA and Telugu Desam Party leader Velagapudi Ramakrishna Babu on Sunday strongly opposed the proposal to merge Anakapalle and Bhimunipatnam Municipalities with the Greater Visakhapatnam Municipal Corporation.

Mr. Babu told reporters on Sunday that GVMC officials instead of inviting the elected representatives for a meeting to elicit their opinion on the crucial issue had just dashed off a letter seeking their opinion.

“This is insulting. Not only elected representatives, they should also seek the opinion of the leaders and the general public,” he said.

The MLA said GVMC had failed miserably in providing basic amenities to 32 grama panchayats which were merged with GVMC a few years ago. He said the corporation was not able to maintain sanitary conditions in those areas.

Education was also neglected as teacher posts are lying vacant in several municipal schools.

Drinking water is still a pipedream in the merged grama panchayats.

Stating that GVMC was in a financial mess due to mismanagement, he said due to vested interest of a few politicians, the merger move was being pursued vigorously. The argument that if the two municipalities were merged, GVMC would have a population of two million plus to get qualified for funding from the Centre, was not convincing, he said at present the corporation was not able to mobilise 30 per cent share from its resources and 20 per cent from the State to get funds from the Centre under JNNURM.

He said due to paucity of funds, GVMC was not able to complete underground drainage and bus rapid transport system projects as per the original schedule.

If Anakapalle and Bhimunipatnam civic bodies were merged, it would lead to increase in the value of agricultural lands and imposition of heavy dose of taxation in the form of property tax.

Former deputy mayor Malla Appalaraju, former TDP floor leader in GVMC council Ch.V. Pattabhi and others were present.

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