Twin cities may have to bear the brunt
Bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh: Twin Cities May Have To Bear The Brunt, Seemandhra, Rayala Telengana. 'What cannot be cured; must be endured,' goes the...
An infrastructure has been built up for a capital of a State of 20 districts, when the State of Andhra Pradesh was formed in 1956 and at present 23. First Cabinet of Dr.Neelam Sanjeeva Reddy had thirteen Ministers and 13 judges in the High Court. Now they are increased by three-fold.
There was only one Inspector General of Police and One Police Commissioner. Now there is more number of Director Generals/Addl.Director Generals of Police in Hyderabad than the number of Dy.Inspector Generals than in 1956. Each Department like Education, Medical and Health had only one Directorate. There were a couple of Chief Engineers. Now they are multiplied by several times and nearing to cross the single digit re-designated as Commissioners, Engineers-in-Chief, etc.
There was only one University; Osmania. A number of Universities, Autonomous Institutions and Deemed Universities have sprung up. An infrastructure has been built up over these years to meet the increasing demands. There was plenty of open space in the secretariat building and different directorates. Additional requirements are met with by adding more in the Secretariat and elsewhere.
Burgula Ramakrishna Rao (BRKR) Bhavan near the Secretariat and abutting the Tank Bund is a mini Secretariat. The New MLA quarters was constructed and the Old MLA quarters were rebuilt to accommodate 294 MLAs and 90 MLCs. All the expenses are met with by the Government of Andhra Pradesh i.e. the people of Andhra Pradesh.
Only handful of trains and a double digit number of buses were plying between the capital and the districts. Now the number of trains must have reached three digits and the buses five. New lines and platforms are constructed by the Railways and the Bus stations by the APSRTC. An overwhelming majority of them are from Seemandhra. It is not 1956. Hyderabad like any other city of 1956 would have developed but not definitely to this extent by leaps and bounds.
Whether it is the Telengana agitation or the Seemandhra struggle, Twin Cities wore a desolated look, reminiscent of the one narrated by Robert Sewell in "Forgotten Empire, Vijayanagara" and "Further Sources of Vijayangara History" by K A Neelakantha Sasthry, and described by Oliver Gold Smith in 'Deserted Village. The buildings were repaired and altered; additions and alternations were made; reconstructed and constructed by systematically exploiting the natural resources; like sand and wood.
It will take some decades for the Twin Cities to level up to the present status and fully utilise the present infrastructure. When the State is truncated, who will occupy them? Till then "To rest is to rust." Among the private enterprises, except the Software in the Hi-Tech City, all other sectors are bound to suffer; particularly the hospitality and tourism industry.
The average occupancy in the Hotels during the Semandhra struggle was around 25 per cent. In case of division of the State, on any day, the peak may not touch 50 per cent. At least now the private enterprise in the Twin Cities, from the 'pan shop to heavy industries' shall make its voice heard.
Whether Hyderabad is accorded the status of Union Territory or a common capital for an initial period of two or ten years, negative growth of the Twin Cities is a foregone conclusion.
(The writer is an advocate, president of Gadicharla Foundation, Andhra Pradesh Library Association (Vijayawada -1914) "Kalkura Nilayam" Sankalbagh, N.R.Pet, Kurnool - 518004.)