Giant strides

Print edition : January 04, 2008

The Pennar river passing through the Gandikota fort offered it a strong natural defence. -

Kadapa district is developing rapidly in the irrigation, industrial, educational and health care sectors.

The Pennar river

From being a perennially drought-prone and backward area ridden with blood feuds for decades, Kadapa district, in the heart of the Rayalaseema region in south-central Andhra Pradesh, has come a long way. It is making giant strides on the path of development in the irrigation, industrial, educational and infrastructural sectors.

The much-needed transformation comes in the wake of the State governments ambitious plans to make the district a model one. The oldest of the Ceded Districts in Rayalaseema, Kadapa has completed 200 years as a district. The bicentenary fete, slated for December 20 through 23, 2007, is expected to wipe out the tarnished image of the district from the minds of people and project the rich culture and heritage of the land of eminent poets, litterateurs, ancient forts and religious places, hill ranges, scenic splendours of the reserve forests, and rivers.

In the heart of the Rayalaseema region, which also includes Kurnool, Anantapur and Chittoor districts, Kadapa district was formed in November 1807 with 19 taluks and with Siddhavatam as its headquarters. As frequent flooding of the Pennar river left Siddhavatam inaccessible, the then British Collector Major Thomas Munro, shifted the district headquarters to Kadapa in 1812.

Kadapa is a repository of mineral wealth, with 45 million tonnes of uranium ores, 740 lakh tonnes of barytes, and 27,000 tonnes of limestone, among others. Factionalism and labour unrest kept entrepreneurs away from the district in the past. Thanks to the development mantra of Chief Minister Dr. Yeduguri Sandinti Rajasekhara Reddy, a son of the soil, and the liberal government funding for irrigation, industrial, education and health projects, factionalism has become a thing of the past.

Untiring efforts of the Chief Minister, his son Y.S. Jaganmohan Reddy, and the initiative of District Collector Movva Tirumala Krishna Babu have heralded a new era of industrialisation in the district. A 10,000-tonne steel plant of Bramhani Industries Limited with an outlay of Rs.20,000 crore is coming up at Ambavaram in Jammalamadugu.

Uranium Corporation of India Limited (UCIL) is setting up a uranium mining and processing plant at a cost of Rs.1,106 crore at Thummalapalle in Pulivendula; it is the second UCIL venture in the country after Jaduguda in Jharkhand. The entire Kadapa basin is a treasure trove of uranium deposits and the district will emerge as a key player in contributing to the nuclear power needs of the country.

The A.P. Mineral Development Corporation has established Mangampet Barytes Project at Mangampet in Obulavaripalle mandal to tap the vast barytes ore available there.

To further the industrialisation process, Jaganmohan Reddy is setting up a cement unit, Raghuram Cements, at Nallalingayapalle in Kamalapuram constituency. His persuasive efforts have led the Dalmias to establish a cement factory in Jammalamadugu. Zuari Cements at Yerraguntla is on a massive capacity augmentation drive. Though there are ample limestone deposits in the district, it had only three cement factories, of Zuari and India Cements Ltd., all in Yerraguntla mandal, for three decades.

Geethanjali Spinning Mills, with a capacity of one lakh spindles, is in the pipeline and Guru Raghavendra Textile Mills and a polysack manufacturing unit are coming up at Pulivendula, promising employment to local people.

Rajasekhara Reddy has established the Rajiv Gandhi Institute of Medical Sciences (RIMS), a super speciality teaching hospital, on 240 acres (1 acre = 0.4 hectare) at Putlampalle in Kadapa with an outlay of Rs.150 crore. Said to be the largest of its kind in the State, it has a 750-bed super-speciality hospital, a medical college with an intake of 150 students, and a nursing college with 100 students.

Yogi Vemana University, 21st Century Gurukulam, the International Institute of Information Technology (IIIT), Nalsar University, the Hyderabad Public School, the regional sports school, dental and nursing colleges and the Centre for Advanced Research in Kadapa and the Jawaharlal Nehru Technological University (JNTU) College of Engineering in Pulivendula have given a tremendous fillip to the educational facilities in the district.

The Rajiv Gandhi Institute of Medical Sciences has a 750-bed super-speciality hospital.-

The Rajiv Gandhi

The Rayalaseema Thermal Power Plant at Kalamalla in Yerraguntla mandal is poised to become a super thermal power plant with the inception of the third stage of two units of 210 MW each. An eco-tourism park is conceived in Idupulapaya on land surrendered by Rajasekhara Reddy to the government.

The government has upgraded the 140-year-old Kadapa municipality into a municipal corporation and upgraded major panchayats of Rajampet, Badvel, Pulivendula, Jammalamadugu and Rayachoti into municipalities, paving the way for urban development. The Kadapa Municipal Corporation, with P. Ravindranath Reddy, Rajasekhara Reddys brother-in-law, as Mayor, has embarked on major developmental plans in the last two years. My endeavour is to develop Kadapa on the lines of Singapore, says Ravindranath Reddy.

Major ongoing works in the Kadapa Municipal Corporation are the beautification of the Buggavanka stream course with an outlay of Rs.62 crore, building of an underground drainage system at Rs.72 crore, widening of the citys roads at Rs.60 crore, and development of an outer ring road and parks. A shilparamam with an amphitheatre is coming up in Kadapa at a cost of Rs.12 crore on 17.61 acres and a youth hostel and an Army recruitment centre are being established at a cost of Rs.2 crore each. A municipal commercial complex and multiplex are coming up on 4.39 acres.

An underground drainage system is being built in Pulivendula municipality, where a road-widening project and work on a vegetable market are in progress. The government has granted Rs.33.6 crore to augment drinking water supply in Pulivendula. A sum of Rs.5 crore has been sanctioned for an underground drainage system in Rayachoti municipality.

The Kadapa aerodrome, constructed during British rule, is to be developed into a full-fledged airport and tenders would be called soon. The area in the vicinity of the aerodrome is being developed as an industrial corridor. An Information Technology (IT) park, in which Infotech and Raheja Industries have already been allotted land, and a garment industry, which will come up near by, would generate substantial employment.

Works worth Rs.10,000 crore are on in Kadapa district, according to the District Collector. There is increased cooperation from public representatives and the perception of the people has changed positively, paving the way for unprecedented development, he remarked. He described the last three and a half years as the golden era in the history of Kadapa district.

The Rajasekhara Reddy government is implementing various welfare schemes for the benefit of the downtrodden and the poor. It has sanctioned Rs.700 crore for the Roads and Buildings Department and assured a grant of Rs.300 crore more for it, Rs.206 crore for the housing programme, Rs.30 crore for rural water supply, Rs.20 crore for primary education (to construct school buildings and additional classrooms), Rs.50 crore for Pasu Kranthi Pathakam to supply milch cattle and sheep to farmers, Rs.13 crore under the Indira Kranthi Pathakam, Rs.111 crore for the A.P. Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme and Rs.3 crore for bio-plantations.

The government has also revived Kadapa Cooperative Sugars Ltd. at Chennur, which was closed down in 1996.

M.T. Krishna Babu, Kadapa District Collector.-

M.T. Krishna

The government has constructed a satellite city at Thollagangannapalle for housing 4,000 families and has built houses for the poor under the Rajiv Gruha Kalpa near the RIMS premises. In order to cater to the housing needs of middle-class and salaried persons, individual houses are to be built under the Rajiv Swagruha scheme. A special economic zone is being set up on 5,000 acres of land unfit for cultivation in Kadapa city and reputed companies are being offered land to establish industrial units.

The government has also taken up pending irrigation projects, such as the Telugu Ganga Project, the Galeru Nagari Sujala Sravanthi, the Pulivendula Branch Canal, the Chitravathi balancing reservoir, the Veligallu project and the modernisation of the Mylavaram reservoir. The plan is to irrigate 8.50 lakh acres with an outlay of Rs.10,000 crore. The Telugu Ganga project, launched in 1983 at an estimated cost of Rs.615 crore to supply 15 thousand million cubic feet of drinking water to Chennai and to irrigate 1.85 lakh acres in Duvvur, Mydukur and Brahmamgari Matham mandals in Kadapa district, is scheduled for completion in 2008.

The Galeru Nagari Sujala Sravanthi phase I was conceived in 1988 to irrigate 36,000 acres. The second phase is to provide an additional ayacut of 2.25 lakh acres in Kadapa, Chittoor and Nellore districts by increasing the capacity of the Pothireddipadu head regulator from 15,000 cusecs (cubic feet per second) at present to 40,000 cusecs.

The Chitravathi balancing reservoir, a part of the Tungabhadra projects High Level Canal (HLC) system, with a storage capacity of 10 tmc ft, is aimed at stabilising 60,000 acres under the Pulivendula Branch Canal. The Veligallu project, intended to irrigate 24,000 acres in the drought-hit mandals of Galiveedu, Lakkireddipalle and Ramapuram besides supplying drinking water to 18 villages, is nearing completion.

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