Modi lays foundation, new Amaravati is born

Promises to execute A.P. Reorganisation Act in full.

Updated - November 26, 2021 10:26 pm IST

Published - October 23, 2015 12:24 am IST - VIJAYAWADA

Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu speaks to Prime Minister Narendra Modi after the foundation was laid for Amaravati on Thursday. Telengana Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao and Japanese Minister Yosuke Takegi are also seen. Photo: K.R. Deepak

Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu speaks to Prime Minister Narendra Modi after the foundation was laid for Amaravati on Thursday. Telengana Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao and Japanese Minister Yosuke Takegi are also seen. Photo: K.R. Deepak

The first brick of the ‘People’s Capital’ of Andhra Pradesh was symbolically put in place by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday when he laid the foundation for Amaravati on the banks of the Krishna between Vijayawada and Guntur.

During his speech at the grand ceremony attended by several dignitaries, including Telangana Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao and Ministers from Japan and Singapore, Mr. Modi pledged to implement all provisions in the A.P. Reorganisation Act in letter and in spirit, but did not make any mention of the special category status or a special financial package for the State.

Visiting Andhra Pradesh for the first time since the acrimonious division of the State, Mr. Rao was the cynosure of all eyes.

Mr. Rao was lustily cheered when he promised all help from his government to build Amaravati.

Mr. Modi referred to Mr. Rao’s presence at the ceremony, and said “My heart overflowed with joy when I heard that Mr. Chandrababu Naidu went to the house of Mr. Chandrasekhar Rao to invite him to the ceremony.”

The Prime Minister also responded to the Andhra Pradesh government’s act of bringing soil and water from different parts of the country to be consecrated in Amaravati. He said he, too, had contributed soil from the precincts of Parliament and water from the Yamuna. In India, a river is not a mere river but reflects the culture of its banks, he added.

He said this endowment of soil and water from Delhi signified that the entire Indian nation stood with the people of Andhra Pradesh in building Amaravati and, in accordance, Delhi would stand shoulder to shoulder with Andhra Pradesh in its endeavour. He said the ‘Modi-Naidu jodi’ would ensure that Andhra Pradesh’s dreams are fulfilled.

Lauding Mr. Naidu for the speed with which he was proceeding to build the capital, he pointed out that many of the cities built in the country since Independence did not accord with modern notions of livability. Urbanisation was the need of the hour and urban development was not a problem, but an opportunity.

Recalling the devastation wrought by the Kutch earthquake in 2001 just before he became Gujarat Chief Minister, Mr. Modi pointed to the challenge faced by the State government in rebuilding the destroyed cities. However, it could be achieved with the political will, the people’s support and a clear vision.

The Prime Minister’s speech was preceded by an impassioned plea by Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu for support from the Centre in building a world class capital for the people of Andhra Pradesh. Referring to the farmers who gave 33,000 acres of land for the capital, he said their gesture would be remembered by history.

Union Minister for Urban Development M. Venkaiah Naidu said the world was looking towards India as the country marched ahead on the path of development under the stewardship of Mr. Modi and India was looking at Andhra Pradesh and Telangana.

Japan’s State Minister for Economy, Trade and Industry Yosuke Takagi said ancient Amaravati was a great seat of learning, and it was a matter of pride and honour for him that his country was being invited to help in building it . He assured that Japan would lend a helping hand to Andhra Pradesh in building Amaravati.

Singapore’s Second Minister for Trade and Industry S. Iswaran referred to his government’s participation in developing the master plans of Amaravati and offered his country’s expertise in urban development. He wanted the State government to implement economic and social policies to attract investors and build a sustainable city.

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