Politicians and traders, cutting across party ideologies and affiliations, paid rich tributes to Vijayawada Chamber of Commerce and Industry president Gaddam Subba Rao in the condolence meeting held at the chamber premises here on Saturday.

Minister for Secondary Education K. Parthasaradhy said that Rao was a self-made man and always strove for the development of the city.

“The trading community has lost a great visionary in him and Rao's best contribution was the Gollapudi wholesale complex for the traders. In his 26-year-old stint as the president of the chamber he gelled well with the political partiers for the growth of Vijayawada,” he added.

MLA Malladi Vishnu said Rao showed resilient and character at the time of adversity and took decisions for the proper conduct of businesses by the traders.

“You can never find a complex like the one at Gollapudi even in Hyderabad,” he pointed out. MLA Vellampalli Srinu exhorted the newly elected body to take inspiration from the veteran while discharging its duties.

Crucial role

Former MLA K. Subba Raju said Rao played a crucial role in the construction of truck terminal, spreading greenery, promotion of e-commence and information technology among traders along with arranging for loans to the small traders to develop their businesses.

“Whenever natural calamity struck the district, Rao and his team was in the front to help the suffering,” he said. He also recollected the several agitations led by Rao against the governments to get the sops to the traders.

Member of the Legislative Assembly Jelli Wilson said that the chamber has lost its sheen with the passing away of Rao. “He (Subba Rao) gave away scholarships to the bright students of the traders”.

Several speakers hailed Rao's contribution to the city such as spreading the importance of marketing and popularising the distribution system along with eradication of black marketing. He also took out a peace rally in Vijayawada soon after the carnage that broke out after the murder of Vangaveeti Mohana Ranga Rao in late 80s.

The speakers also hailed the chamber for electing its new panel unanimously and exhorted the new president Vellampalli Ramachandra Rao and general secretary Vakkalagadda Bhaskar Rao emulate the veteran.