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New Twist: Committee Opposes Vijaywada-Guntur as Capital

New twist has emerged in the row of Andhra Pradesh's new capital. According to reports, the Sivaramakrishnan Committee, constituted by Union government to find out suitable location for the capital city of new Andhra Pradesh, has apparently opposed the State government's proposal to set up capital between Vijayawada and Guntur. It was quoted as saying that capital between Vijayawada-Guntur is "unwanted" and incurs a great "loss".

Ending months of speculation, the Sivaramakrishnan Committee (SRC) has finally submitted its report. The 5-member panel has submitted its final report in two parts. In Part I, the report discussed about how a new capital should be whereas Part II deals about the basic facilities available in various districts. Going into details, the committee has proposed government to develop AP into multi-capital state. It voted in favour of categorising AP into four regions- North Andhra, Central Andhra, Coastal Andhra and Rayalaseema. The committee also suggested to set up 3 Capital Zones across the State. Vehemently opposing the concept of "Super city" and "Smart City", it is reliably learnt that the panel is "against" to a mega "Singapore-like" capital between Vijayawada and Guntur and want to develop the Seemandhra uniformly. It asked government not to put all egss in one basket i.e., not to limit investments to one region but want to spread it equally through out the state.

Recommending Martur-Vinukonda as ideal location for capital, Committee suggested government to distribute its offices in various districts. The commitee wants capital to be merely an administrative capital, like Gandhinagar in Gujarat. Institutions like the high court and others would have to be allotted to different parts of the state. Assembly, CM Office and Secretariat should be located in Capital city whereas High Court should be set up in Visakhapatnam and High Court bench should be constituted in Kurnool or Anantapur. The Committee asked government to do "fair justice" to Kurnool which was an erstwhile Capital.

The committee advised government to make Vizag as Hitech zone. According to Committee's recommendations, the north Andhra zone includes Srikakulam, Vijayanagaram, Visakhapatnam and East Godavari districts whereas Central Andhra zone includes West Godavari, Krishna, Guntur and Rayalaseema has Kadapa, Kurnool, Chittoor and Anantapur districts and Prakasam, Nellore districts are to be treated as Coastal Andhra. It asked governemnt to develop Rayalaseema arcade as Transport Corridor and wanted to construct a Railway zone in Kalahasthi Spain. It further said governemnt to sanction a railway line between Guntur and Bangalore.

Meanwhile, AP Planning Commission recommended below places for the capital.

1. Mushunuru

2. Macherla

3. Mangalagiri

4. Gollapalli

5. Penukonda

6. Martur

7. Donakonda

8. Pulichintala

The SRC report will be submitted to Union Home Secretary Anil Goswami on Thursday morning. If all goes well according to plan proposed by Sivaramakrishnan committee report, Andhra Pradesh is going to be the first multi-capital state in India. However, the decision of state government remain final as it will take a final call.

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