Mr Reddy has finally put AP, however belatedly, on the firm path of sustainable development and a bright future
After several years of contestations over the shifting of capital, a war whose many battles were fought in the courts (a case is currently ongoing in the highest) and on the streets (when the displaced farmers of Amaravati, the grandiloquent fantasy capital of previous chief minister N. Chandrababu Naidu, held long protests, strikes and marches), the issue of a new capital for Andhra Pradesh was finally settled when chief minister Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy firmly indicated that Visakhapatnam was the new centre of power for the state nine years after its bifurcation.
The issue of a capital for Andhra Pradesh, a state that lost Hyderabad to Telangana, has rankled with the people and its politics from the start. It was one of its core reasons for opposition to the bifurcation.
After the split, despite Hyderabad being a temporary shelter for AP as common capital, Mr Naidu made haste and exited, and in an impractical quest of vainglory, he choose to set the state, despite financial inability, on a path of a grand new green-field capital city called Amaravati. The TDP pushed along the reckless move, despite protestations from environmentalists, businessmen and citizens, for narrow vested interests.
Mr Jagan Mohan Reddy has put an end to the madness, but had to bring in the ruse of decentralised development and three capitals, to legally go ahead with his pragmatic plan. Visakhapatnam, the largest and most developed city of the state, having a lovely coastal ambience, was a perfect choice.
By finally making it unambiguous that he would be moving to the executive capital, or the real capital, of Vizag shortly, and inviting investors to come there to explore investment opportunities, Mr Reddy has finally put AP, however belatedly, on the firm path of sustainable development and a bright future.