Vizag Development Council urges Centre to ensure equitable development

The APNGOs on Thursday announced suspension of their strike following an assurance given by Chief Minister N. Kiran Kumar Reddy that he could, at best, fight it out in the Assembly and strive to protect the interests of Seemandhra.

APSRTC has already called off its 60-day strike and other groups also seem to have reconciled to the fact that Telangana is imminent sooner than later.

Against this backdrop, Vizag Development Council (VDC) sought that the Union government should take every possible step to protect the interests of the people of Andhra and Rayalaseema, who are worried on account of division of the State.

The VDC sought that besides granting a special package, the government should also clear some of the pending demands of Andhra and Rayalaseema regions. Instead of concentrating all the development activities at the proposed State capital, it is better to develop major cities and towns in all the 13 districts in Seemandhra.

The VDC came out with suggestions in areas like water resources, power, industrial development and employment, tourism, roadways, sports, education, railways, maritime trade, health, government offices, airports, tribal area development, revenue sharing, backward area development and new capital development.

With regard to water, the gates of all dams and irrigation canals should be operated by CRPF personnel for Andhra and Telangana as per the Central Water Tribunal, huge desalination plants with investments like in petro corridor are needed for future water needs and merger of Bhadrachalam division in Seemandhra, as it was till 1961. This is very crucial for the Godavari water as also for power generation.

Power allocation

As far as power is concerned, allocation of power from the Central Grid should be ensured for a period of 10 years for 24-hour power supply to domestic, industry and agriculture to all villages, power allocation should be increased for the remaining districts of Andhra Pradesh to support industrial development and gas from KG basin should be allocated to power plants in AP on priority basis.

The other suggestions include creation of free trade zone in Vizag or Kakinada with concessions and facilities like in Singapore or Dubai, early sanction of ITIR (Information Technology Investment Region) for Vizag, allotment of a lead bank with special concessions for film studios, animation and gaming companies in one zone in Visakahapatnam, establishment of two public sector petroleum industries in Vizag PCPIR region as anchor industries, creation of KGPG basin from West Godavari to Prakasam with special concessions and focus on agri-based industries and special emphasis on storage of edible items.

With regard to roadways, the VDC sought conversion of existing Chennai-Howrah four-lane road into six-lane, expansion of Golden Quadrilateral into eight lanes within city limits and six lanes outside the city limits of all four zones.

It also sought a time-bound package for development of new capital in Seemandhra.

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Printable version | Sep 30, 2020 9:46:32 PM |

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