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Whose road is it anyway?

B. Madhu Gopal
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The road from Aganampudi to Duvvada railway station is a motorists’ nightmare

The Duvvada railway station-Aganampudi National Highway junction road in Visakhapatnam presents a pathetic picture. —Photos: C.V. Subrahmanyam
The Duvvada railway station-Aganampudi National Highway junction road in Visakhapatnam presents a pathetic picture. —Photos: C.V. Subrahmanyam

The main approach road to Duvvada Railway Station from Aganampudi junction on the National Highway (NH-16) is giving nightmares to motorists. The tar on the road, which serves the people of Aganampudi, Lankelapalem, Ukkunagaram Sectors 8, 9, 10, 11 and 12 and Seniwada, is akin to a narrow flowing stream.

The alternative route via Kurmannapalem adds around three km. and the motorists have to pay up at the Aganampudi Toll Gate on the highway. “About five years ago, the Visakhapatnam Urban Development Authority (VUDA) officials planned to widen the road to 100 feet but the Roads and Buildings (R & B) Department objected to it as the road was under their purview,” recalls the secretary of the Aganampudi Development Committee Patta Rama Appa Rao.

“Former MLA Chintalapudi Venkataramaiah had written to both R&B and VUDA but there was no response from both the departments. The road is located in the 57th ward of Greater Visakhapatnam Municipal Corporation (GVMC) but the maintenance of the road is under R & B.”

“Patch work and minor repairs to the road margins were done at a few places about six months ago but even that was stopped apparently in view of the general elections. Visakhapatnam Steel Plant (VSP) can also carry out repairs to the road as part of its Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) activities,” he says.

The committee has also waged a relentless battle seeking shifting of the Aganampudi Toll Gate beyond Lankelapalem as both these areas fall under the GVMC limits. The Lorry Owners’ Association has also sought shifting of the toll gate.

“The National Highways Authority of India sent a letter to us in February 2013 agreeing to shift the toll gate to Sirasapalli. The work on erection of the new toll gate and its shifting is still pending reportedly due to problems with the contractor,” says Mr. Rama Appa Rao. “VSP has constructed a culvert at Chintalagedda on this road. There are no streetlights on this road. The movement of heavy vehicles like lorries is high on this road as the drivers are finding it convenient to avoid the toll gate,” says Duvvada Railway Users’ Association secretary K. Eswar.

The road from Aganampudi to Duvvada railway station is a motorists’ nightmare

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