A New Year, a new beginning
Will he or won’t he?
Prof. Kodandaram, TJAC chairman, will decide whether to launch his own political party next year. Prof. Kodandaram has been in the news ever since the state was formed, taking up several agitations and meetings with all those oppose the functioning of the TRS government in various sectors. Prof. Kodandaram who was once selected by TRS chief K. Chandrasekhar Rao to head the political TJAC has been denied appointment by the Chief Minister. Main Opposition Congress is hopeful of Prof. Kodandaram extending his support to the party in 2018.
Santosh Kumar, one of the TRS general secretaries and a close confident of CM K. Chandrasekhar Rao, is the person to watch out for in 2018 as there are speculations that he may be picked up as one of the candidates from the ruling party for the Rajya Sabha seat in March. Santosh is the son of KCR wife Sobha’s sister and heads T-News channel and the Namaste Telangana newspaper. The earlier speculation of KCR sending Divikonda Damodara Rao, to the Rajya Sabha may not happen due to the latter’s involvement in Miyapur land scam and Santosh will replace him.
New kid on the block
The recent Adivasis movement has thrown a new leader from the community, Kumaram Sone Rao, the grand-son of Adivasi legendary leader Kumaram Bheem is now spearheading. The man in his early 40’s has already established his leadership across Adilabad, Warangal and Khammam tribal agency areas who intend to take forward the movement against inclusion of Lambadas in the tribals list who according to him are enjoying the fruits of reservation given to Tribals. He is carrying not only the legacy of his grand father but also his famous slogan ‘Jal Jangle and Jameen’
Actor-turned-politician Pawan Kalyan will be watched most as far as Andhra Pradesh politics are concerned. He said he will complete all his ongoing commitments in films and plunge into active politics in 2018. He also announced he will contest in coming Assembly elections from one of the Assembly segment in Anantapur district. However, there is more suspense in store how his political line would pan out. Will it be pro-TD as is being practiced, will he strike an alliance with the TDP or go alone are the questions before him to decide. PK who has a good reputation in public for taking up public issues will have to be vigilant about the criticism against him the moment he takes full pledged political activity..
Winner takes it all
The Hyderabad girl Jakka Vaishnavi Reddy, with her sensational performances on the court, is turning heads at the Junior badminton circuit. At 15, she is knocking on the doors of the top five ranking bracket in World Juniors (Under-19). Currently at No. 9 the youngster is set to soar when the latest BWF rankings will be released on Thursday.
It has been a good year for Vaishnavi. Out of the 11 tournaments she played, Vaishnavi won six tournaments — five junior and one senior women’s respectively. Beside this, the Hyderabad girl also finished second best on two occasions and also won the bronze medal thrice.
The city girl, who is currently at No. 93 in the senior women’s circuit won the tournaments this year across countries such as Turkey, Russia and South Africa.
Sachin Tendulkar-backed Smartron, an OEM and Internet-of-Things focused company, has had a great 2017, with a few acquisitions strengthen its pre-sence in the market. Its founder Mahesh Lingared-dy has already been a successful entrepreneur with Intel acquiring Soft Machines, which he had cofo-unded. Now, Lingareddy has great plans for India — creating a global brand a la Apple and Samsung from India. He plans are based TronX, an AI powered IoT platform. Smartron is one of the few companies that needs to be watched in 2018 for more developments.
Reams of papers might have been used by hundreds of experts to warn against the dangers of using plastic, especially for food-related purposes. However, nobody else might have contributed as much as Nara-yana Peesapati of Bakey’s Edible Cutlery. A former Icrisat scientist, Mr Peesapati created cutlery which had can eaten by humans after using them — saving earth from plastic and saving gallons of water. While the company has been in existence for some time, it has gained traction recently after people had become aware of ill-effects of plastic.
Capillary Technologies aims at helping brands by connecting with its their customers. Though it is Sing-apore-based company, it has Hyde-rabadi roots. Its co-founders Aneesh Reddy, Ajay Modani and Krishna Mehra uses big data platform to help companies identify and understand their consumers. It is using new technologies like facial recognition to create more relevant data for its clients. The big data has become one of important fields in IT and customer analytics and Capillary intends to take a significant pie of this market.
Letdowns of 2017
Most certainly, all was not prim and proper in 2017 nor was it a lacklustre year. Telangana did register some achievements to its name and missed out on some milestones it had set for itself. Here’s a look-back at areas of significance where the state did not do too well, projects that could not take off due to various reasons. From the biggest drug bust that shook the city but failed to proceed on legal terms to the short-lived joy over the announcement of daily water supply to residents. This is what didn’t happen in 2017...
WATER PROMISE WAS A MIRAGE
The Metro water board thrilled Hyderabadis when they announced that the core area would be supplied water 24x7 instead of the usual alternate day schedule. But that joy was short-lived. The scheme never saw the light of day for various reason; one being the shortage of water. Later, the board said daily water supply would begin December onwards. This too has passed and the city is still waiting. Also, the extensive 1,900-km water pipeline network was slated to be completed by March 2017, but lies incomplete.
TRAFFIC SYSTEM ALL JAMMED UP
The Integrated Traffic System, an ambitious revamp of the traffic signalling system meant to start in 2017, did not work out owing to many technical issues. The `66.5 crore project having 221 signal completely automated and centrally controlled, vehicle actuated technology, ATC (area traffic control) with synchronised signal and corridor management and cameras installed on all roads to monitor the traffic flow has been lingering for over five year now.
The 69th anniversary celebrations of National Cadet Corps did not happen in 2017 as the AP government refused to provide funds. Never in the history of the NCC had the anniversary celebrations ever got cancelled. The AP government rejected the proposal to provide `3 lakh in order to carry out the anniversary parade for 600 cadets. The denial came after months of practice by the NCC cadets.
DRUG BUST RUNS INTO ROADBLOCK
Investigation into one of the biggest drug busts in the city in July by the TS Excise Department – that sent shudders down the entire Tollywood fraternity as also corporate schools for student involvement -- hit a roadblock. As many as 12 Tollywood personalities, including actors Raviteja, Charmme Kaur, Subbaraju, director Puri Jagannadh and others, were grilled for hours on end individually, and their statements were recorded. Forensic experts even collected their hair and blood samples for analysis, but the reports have not yet come in. Students of the city’s well-known schools were also allegedly involved in the drug racket.
They had allegedly been receiving drugs from dealers, forcing the schools concerned to take up intense counselling sessions. None of the film personalities admitted to their role in the drug racket, but investigating agencies have not ruled out their role in the racket....