The coastal region of Andhra Pradesh, fuming over the creation of Telangana, may get an Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), an Indian Institute of Management (IIM), a metro rail, an international airport and a training hospital modelled on the All-India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS).
Sources involved in the process said that the Group of Ministers headed by home minister Sushil Kumar Shinde is contemplating these projects in a bid to mollify Seemandhra, but plans to tread a tightrope on a host of contentious issues, including the key one of sharing water resources with Telangana.
Among the other potential goodies lined up for Seemandhra are a new port, a new central university, a school of fashion technology and a few research institutes.The sources said that while various options were under consideration, a final decision would take time. A few projects may also come up in Telangana. Hyderabad, which falls deep inside the proposed Telangana state, already has an IIT.
The GoM meeting last week discussed the water sharing issue and ordered detailed reports, Seemandhra leaders are pressing for a stable mechanism to ensure water supply to their region. Large portions of the key rivers supplying Seemandhra lie in Telangana.
Sources indicate that Shinde’s panel may consider several proposals including creation of centrally-controlled River Valley Authorities for Krishna and Godavari — the two key rivers.
Detailed discussions are set to take place on projects like Srisailam and Nagarjuna Sagar reservoirs, Rajolibanda Diversion Scheme and Polavaram irrigation project.
Srisailam is a key reservoir for drinking water and electric power in Seemandhra. The Nagarjuna Sagar, undivided Andhra’s biggest reservoir, spreads across Nalgonda district of Telangana and Guntur district of Seemandhra.
“We are trying to find out a mechanism that ensures both states get equal opportunities in terms of water resources and irrigation facilities,” said a senior Congress leader.