Farmer backlash fear drives AP capital survey team to skies

Farmer backlash fear drives AP capital survey team to skies

Members of the urban planning expert team from Singapore completed the first day of their three-day aerial survey of the capital region of Andhra Pradesh on Wednesday.

They allegedly feared backlash from farmers of certain villages opposing the TDP government’s proposed land pooling policy that promises them developed land in return of their agricultural lands on the banks of the river Krishna.

The team, along with Municipal Development Minister P Narayana, left for Guntur on a helicopter, cancelling the earlier plan to visit the villages earmarked for development as capital region by road.  Sources say police have advised the team to take the aerial route as irate farmers could create hurdles.

“The local administration and even the MLAs were not informed about the secret visit,” said Alla Ramakrishna Reddy, YSRC MLA of Mangalgiri constituency, which forms a part of the capital region along with Tullur and Tadepalli mandals (blocks). He alleged that the TDP government is hand in glove with big business houses in Singapore and is hell bent on trading the future of farmers for commercial gains.

The YSRC which has been opposing the construction of a mega-capital on the fertile river front has organised farmers of Nidamarru, Kuragallu and Betapudi villages in Mangalagiri rural and Penumaka and Undavalli in Tadepalli mandals, who have passed a resolution rejecting the  government’s offer and announced that they will not contribute their land for the capital city.

Meanwhile, the government has made it clear that the Singapore team will complete the master plan and the draft plan of the core area of the capital by June.

“There will be three ring roads surrounding the capital region each with a length of 75 km, 125 km and 200 km,” P Narayana said.

The Memorandum of Understanding between the AP infrastructure corporation and the International Enterprise Singapore on the master planning and development of the capital city and capital region of AP was signed on Sunday.

This will allow the Singapore government agencies and companies to develop the master planning and development of cities, townships and industrial parks, as well as the education of leaders and administrators in urban governance.

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