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Andhra Pradesh government proposes 8 capital zones based on remote sensing

The Andhra Pradesh government has recommended eight capital zones based on 20 scientific indicators including ground water, surface water availability, air, sea and road connectivity and availability of degraded forest land. The AP State Remote Sensing and Application Centre (APSRSC ) used remote sensing data to zero in on these locations. Marutur, Donakonda of Prakasham district and Vinukonda  of Guntur district selected by Sivaramakrishna Committee for setting up CM’s office, secretariat and Assembly are among the sites identified by APSRSC.

Interestingly, Musunur (near Eluru and Nuzivid) in Krishna district, Mangalagiri, Macherla, Bollapalli, Pulichintala in Guntur district are the other capital zones identified. The Sivaramakrishna committee rejected Macherla and Pulichintala stating ‘both are on the border of Telangana and prima facie many not be attractive locations for capital functions’.

Read: Central panel recommends either Marutur, Vinukonda or Donakonda as Andhra capital

APSRC director general and senior IFS official Mr. Sanjay Gupta said, “The committee has given around 20 to 25 indicators like ground water availability, surface water availability in the basin area, road network, city or town population density, availability of land, airport and seaport connectivity. We have mapped all 13 districts and given the data. We have not given any recommendations we only gave information as per the indicators.”

“All the eights sites have land and water availability. We have mapped them based on current land use pattern. We don’t have info about land ownership but we had particulars of forest and degraded forest area based on remote sensing technology. These areas have highest degraded forest area,” he said.

Srikrishna Committee in the report said, “Early in July 2014 the committee received some information from the department planning indicating in a map eight possible locations for a capital. All these eights locations are in the general region which we have referred to as middle Andhra.”

The committee is yet to visit any of these sites since information about these were made available to the committee only in July. Musunur adjoins Eluru and is substantially a part of Vijayawada-Guntur-Tenala-Mangalagiri Development authority. The next location is Mangalgiri which is very much a part of VGTMA. Pulichintala is40 kms from Vijayawada beyond Amaravati and located upstream of Krishna.

“Presently there are limited road connections for Pulichintala. As for Macherla this is further west of Pulichintala and is close to Nagarjunasagar dam. It is nearly 100 kilomtres away from Vijayawada,” said the committee.

Read: Vijayawada loses the race for Andhra Pradesh capital

The four other sites suggested by the department of planning Marutur is on NH-5 on the Guntur-Ongole road. APSRC mentioned Gannavaram airport, Nagarjunasagar airstrip, Donakonda air strip and existing ports of Machiliptnam, Vadrevu mentioned near to the eight sites.

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