Visakhapatnam: The Andhra Pradesh Tourism Development Corporation (APTDC) would install India’s tallest Buddha statue atop Seethamma Hill opposite Indra Keladri in Vijayawada city to turn it into a major attraction in the city. The corporation will be looking for a consultant to prepare a technical and feasible report, after which tenders will be floated.
Managing director of APTDC M. Girija Shankar said the proposed 40-ft-tall statue will be a new attraction for both domestic and foreign tourists visiting Andhra Pradesh, and as per the latest data, the tallest Buddha statue of 45 feet tall is located in Bhutan. Talking to the media on the sidelines of a meeting, Girija Shankar said efforts were also being made to invite the Dalai Lama for the Kalachakra which will be held in Amaravati in Guntur district either in December 2017 or in January 2018. Nearly Rs 100 crore has been earmarked for development of five Buddhist shrines at Thotlakonda, Bavikonda, Sankaram, Salihundam and Bojjannakonda in Vizag and Srikakulam districts, he said.
APTDC has more plans to attract more tourists from various parts of the globe and we have hired a London-based consultant, Raj Singh, for operating cruise tourism in the backwaters of Godavari and also from Vizag to Baruva. The corporation is also focusing on water sports in a big way by launching heli-tourism and seaplane sorties. A master plan is also being prepared for the entire beach of Andhra Pradesh from Icchapuram to Tada and in Konaseema.
Hotels, resorts and restaurants would be coming up all along the highway, it was stated. Replying to a question, Girija Shankar said the APTDC will build cottages and provide other facilities at Lammasingi at an estimated cost of Rs 40 crore.