Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao carries silk cloth for Sammakka and Saralamma during his visit to Medaram on Friday. (Photo: DC)
WARANGAL: Permanent facilities for devotees would be arranged at Medaram by next year and the tribal fair would be celebrated on a larger scale for which rs 200 core would be sanctioned, Chief Minister K. Chandrashekar Rao said.
He visited the tribal shrine along with wife Shobha and daughter and Nizamabad MP Kavitha and offered prayers at the altar on Friday. This was the first time Mr Rao is visiting Medaram after becoming Chief Minister.
He told mediapersons that during the statehood agitation, he visited Medaram and prayed to Sammakka and Saralamma to make the dream of the people come true. However, owing to ill health he could not make it to the jatara in 2016.
"Permanent arrangements have to be made at Medaram. The area around the altars is insufficient. There is a need to gather 300 acres of land around Medaram. That will enable us to make good arrangements for bathing ghats and queues. Gone are the days when the devotees used to visit Medaram only once every two years. Now they are visiting throughout the year," he said.
Within 15 to 20 days after the completion of the jatara, he along with other officials would visit Medaram, he said. The collector would be instructed to identify and acquire the required land ‘at any cost’, he said.
"We are sanctioning Rs 200 crore for the permanent arrangements at the jatara. The funds would be allotted in the current Budget," he added.
The Chief Minister, Mr Chandrasekhar Rao, said a small dam had to be built across Jampanna Vagu. Facilities at Medaram were not up to the mark, he said and blamed rulers of united Andhra Pradesh for their ‘negligence’.
The Centre had failed to give the jatara national status, he said and promised to put pressure and take up the issue with the President.
Medaram tribal region set to get development boost
Medaram does not have proper accommodation faci-lities and arrangements except at the time of the jatara when the state adm-inistration gets involved.
With devotees thronging the pilgrim centre all through the year, the government’s decision to spe-nd `200 crore on Medaram will pave the way for construction of permanent structures for accommodation, laying of link roads for seamless travel and improving facilities to provide drinking water.
According to C. Raghu-pathi, who retired as additional commissioner, end-owments, in undivided AP, said the entire region will benefit with the decision of Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao to develop the region.
He suggested shifting of the existing Integrated Tribal Development Authority (ITDA) project office in Eturunagaram to Medaram and undertaking new initiatives as part of tribal area development.
TRS MP Sitaram Naik, in whose Mahbubabad constituency Medaram region falls, thanked the Chief Minister for announcing the `200 crore fund.
He said that devotees were coming to Medaram all through the year and needed facilities like accommodation, queue lines, supply of drinking water and milk.
"In Tirumala, people wait in queues for hours because they are provided with the necessary facilities. We will try to take cue from it and implement a similar model so that devotees visiting Medaram during the Samakka-Saralamma jatara and at other times can fulfil their vows without any hassles," he said.