In the recent past, Andhra Pradesh chief minister, Chandrababu Naidu has been trying hard to sell Amravati as an ideal capital city that he claims is going to be the pride of Andhra people and an engine of growth. It seems that TDP is trying to make electoral gains by hard selling Amravati and showcasing it as a world class city that is going to come up. In fact, municipal administration and urban development minister, Dr. Ponguru Narayana, who is considered quite close to chief minister Naidu and has been overseeing the construction of Amravati, himself admitted that Amravati will be on the top of poll agenda. This explains why Chandrababu Naidu has been pressing hard about the upcoming capital city even though it is still in the initial stages and not much is known about the details of the supposedly world class capital city.
However, this Tuesday, the Andhra Pradesh chief minister made a major blunder while speaking about Amravati. Addressing a gathering after listing the ‘Amravati bond’ on the Bombay Stock Exchange, he claimed that his government has envisioned an investment of US $ 2-4 trillion for developing Amravati, the greenfield capital city. Not only this, he further claimed that fund raising is not going to be a humungous task for his government because he has proper decision making and execution mechanism in place. He said, “Our infrastructure development plans need USD 2-4 trillion. Today the Centre is estimating only USD 1 trillion for infrastructure development. But for Amaravati, we do not see any problem in mobilising even USD 2-4 trillion.” Naidu added, “If there is no trust and no proper policy framework, there could be a problem (in raising funds). However, if we can do our work efficiently with proper execution, then there is no money constraint.” Then, he went on to claim credit for the success of Amravati Bond 2018 and suggested that this reflects investor confidence in his government and the development of Amravati.
It seems that in making exaggerated claims about Amravati, Naidu totally lost touch with ground realities. Take time to digest this, India is the sixth largest economy of the world and its total worth is US $ 2.6 trillion. However, Chandrababu Naidu wants US $ 2-4 trillion dollars for developing a single city. Even if the entire Indian economy, and mind it, we are talking about one of the largest economies in the world, came together even then it won’t be possible to meet the prospective requirements of Amravati that Naidu has in mind. This should have been enough embarrassment for Chandrababu Naidu and TDP. However, he did not stop here and also claimed that state economy should touch US $ 1 trillion by 2029. Currently, Andhra economy stands at US $ 130 billion and this is too mammoth a leap that he is proposing.
From this blunder it is clear that Naidu has got his priorities wrong. It does not seem that he is too serious about his claims and that is why he might be making such airy claims. This also raises serious and pertinent questions about the policy and execution mechanism that he was boasting about. It seems that his planners and those responsible for execution of the ambitious project to build the capital city of Amravati have got their numbers seriously wrong. Amravati at the most is only a poll agenda for the TDP and they are not at all serious about pursuing it in a reasonable manner.