Jagan Performs Bhumi Puja For Bandar Port

VIJAYAWADA: Chief Minister Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy performed Bhumi Puja for construction of the Machilipatnam Port at Manginapudi of Machilipatnam mandal, Krishna district, on Monday. The port would come up at an estimated cost of Rs 5,156 crore, with four berths, and handle 35 million tonnes of cargo. The works would be completed in 24 months. Addressing a public meeting in Machilipatnam, the CM said, “It has been a long dream for the Bandar port. One side would be the port and the other side a big city. The Bandar port has a history of sea trade some hundreds of years ago. Once the port is developed, Machilipatnam will be developed on lines similar to Mumbai or Chennai.”

“Our government has cleared all court cases, acquired land, got all requisite permissions, arranged the financial closure and completed the tender process to start the port construction works. As the cargo traffic goes up, we can increase the number of berths and enhance the port’s cargo handling capacity to 116 MT.” “We will also develop connectivity and other infrastructure for the port by extending NH-216 by 6.5 km to the port. The Gudivada-Machilipatnam railway line located at a distance of 7.5 km will also be extended to the port, Some 0.5mld water from Bandar Canal will be brought from a distance of 11 km through pipeline to be linked to the port, to facilitate export and import of cargo. These would change the physical features of Krishna district, the CM said. He said trade through the upcoming port will not only help AP but the states like Telangana, Chhattisgarh, Karnataka etc. The port-based industries will help generate employment to lakhs of people in Machilipatnam itself, he said. “Our children completing graduation will get employment in their own neighbourhood.”

The CM said, “Earlier, there were so many hurdles to construct the port as (Telugu Desam leader) N. Chandrababu Naidu was eager to avoid the port for the reason that he took away 22 villages and 33,000 plots of lands and notified these lands in order to restrict the farmers from selling these lands and caused trouble to them.” Explaining about the efforts made for developing the port, the CM said 17,000 acres of government land was allotted for the port. This apart, for railway line and road development, 240 acres was acquired from the farmers.

Port-based industries would come up. Some 4,000 acres of government land would be linked to the port; and industries could be set up to facilitate generation of lakhs of jobs. “In 24 months, the physical features of Machilipatnam would change and big ships could be spotted in the sea.” “Unlike the earlier practise of collector visiting Machilipatnam once in a week, we made Machilipatnam the headquarter for Krishna district so that all officers would be functional here,” he said and added that a medical college too would come up here at a cost of Rs 550 crore. In three months, the first-year admissions would be taken up. He said the government was also developing a fishing harbour at a cost of Rs 420 crore. The works to an extent of 60 per cent were over. In four months, the harbour works would be over and it would be ready for use.

The Chief Minister also dwelt at length on other decisions of the government to help the people. “For imitation jewellery, power tariff was reduced to 3.75 per unit from 7.65 as I had assured such units during my Padayatra,” he said and added that nearly 40,000 people were getting benefit from it. The CM said that for the benefit of fishermen, works at 10 fishing harbours were going on in a brisk manner, in addition to the works on developing six fish landing centres, for which all the state government was spending Rs 3,700 crore. As for the welfare schemes, the CM said that Rs 2.1 lakh crore was remitted into the accounts of women through DBT and non-DBT modes. This apart, 30 lakh house sites were given, with each site costing nearly Rs 2.5 lakh; and this meant a benefit of nearly Rs 75,000 crore to women. He said that in non-DBT alone, their government provided financial benefit worth Rs 3 lakh crore to the beneficiaires. “We are giving 30 lakh houses with each unit costing Rs 5 lakh to Rs 10 lakh. The CM announced that he would give away house sites to the poor in Amaravati on May 26. He lashed out at TD chief Chandrababu Naidu for “failing to give away even a single house site and subjecting the people from various social groups like SC, BC and women to humiliation on several issues.”

He said that he felt pain at the remarks of Naidu during his visit to Visakhapatnam when he termed the 1.1 cents site proposed to be offered to the poor for construction of a house at Amaravati as a “cemetery.” Naidu lacked a concern for the homeless poor, he added.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle. )
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