After abandoning Amaravati for 14 months, Jagan decides to develop it again
As the Andhra Pradesh high court on Friday extended status quo on the shifting of executive capital of the state from Amaravati to Visakhapatnam till August 27, the Jagan Mohan Reddy government came out with a proposal to complete all the unfinished works in Amaravati and develop it as a metropolitan region.
Works worth thousands of crores which were under various stages construction in Amaravati had come to a halt after Jagan took over as the chief minister on May 30, 2019.
These included an eight-lane seed access road connecting the highway with Amaravati, internal roads, trunk lines, building of culverts, buildings for secretariat, assembly and high court complexes, besides residential quarters for lawmakers, ministers, all-India service officers, state government employees and permanent permanent official buildings and quarters for judges.
Jagan had proposed to form three capital cities with executive capital at Visakhapatnam and judicial capital at Kurnool, while retaining Amaravati only as a legislative capital.
With farmers of Amaravati, who had given nearly 34,000 acres of land for the capital city, moving the high court challenging the Jagan government’s three capitals plan, the court on August 4 ordered a status quo on Amaravati till Friday and again till August 27.
The petitioners pointed out that the previous government had spent more than Rs 10,000 crore on various projects in Amaravati and all this expenditure would go waste if the administrative capital is shifted to Visakhapatnam. The high court asked the Jagan government as to what the government would do with the already constructed buildings and infrastructure.
On Wednesday, Jagan held a high-level meeting of the Amaravati Metropolitan Region Development Authority (AMRDA), formed in place of earlier AP Capital Region Development Authority (APCRDA) and directed that the authorities chalk out an action plan on Amaravati and mobilise financial resources to complete all the pending works.
“The chief minister instructed that all the construction works be resumed. He asked them to prepare a development plan for Amaravati, which will be our legislative capital,” state municipal administration and urban development minister Botsa Satyanarayana said.
The AMRDA authorities told the chief minister that it would require at least Rs 14,000-Rs 15,000 crore to complete all the works. Jagan told them to find ways to mobilise additional resources in coordination with the finance department, so that all the building and road infrastructure works be completed.
The minister said the farmers of Amaravati would get value for their developed plots which they had got in lieu of the lands they had given for the capital city. He appealed to the farmers and realtors who had invested in Amaravati to give up their apprehensions on the three capitals, as the government was keen on developing Amaravati as a metropolitan city.
“It is our responsibility to develop entire Amaravati and no injustice would be done to any farmer,” he said.
An official familiar with the development said the government was contemplating putting up all the completed building infrastructure and developed lands for sale to generate money.
“One of the real estate projects - Happy Nest, a residential complex of 1200 high-end apartment units in 12 G+18 towers in 14.3 acres at Nelapadu village - will be completed at the earliest and put up for sale. This is expected to generate huge revenue,” the official said.
Meanwhile, TDP president N Chandrababu Naidu said on Friday that projects worth Rs 41,675 crore were grounded for developing the government and public infrastructure in Amaravati and various buildings were completed to the extent of 45 to 80 per cent.
“The land bank available with the state government in Amaravati would bring a revenue of Rs 90 lakh crore to Rs one lakh crore. Once fully developed, Amaravati city would emerge into such a vibrant city where the government would have its wealth to the tune of Rs 2-3 lakh crore,” he said.