TDP govt to complete 6 months on Monday; challenges galore

 Developing a capital city, improving the economy and putting Andhra Pradesh on the fast track of development are some of the challenges for the TDP government led by N Chandrababu Naidu, which completes six months in office tomorrow.

Hyderabad: Developing a capital city, improving the economy and putting Andhra Pradesh on the fast track of development are some of the challenges for the TDP government led by N Chandrababu Naidu, which completes six months in office tomorrow.

Riding on the back of a popular support in the wake of bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh, Naidu took over the reins of the residuary state, after being in the opposition for 10 years, on June 8.

Naidu, however, had found himself in an unenviable position as the state, devoid of a capital city and undivided AP's crown jewel Hyderabad, is faced with a budgetary deficit of Rs 16,000 crore.

Adding to Naidu's onerous responsibility are the election promises of TDP, like loan waiver for farmers and self-help group women, creation of jobs and enhanced social security pensions, among others.

Immediately after he was sworn in as chief minister at a grand function near Vijayawada, Naidu had signed different files relating to the loan waiver, closure of illegal liquor dens, enhancement of social security pensions and a scheme for supply of clean drinking water to villages.

He signed another file enhancing the retirement age for state government employees from 58 to 60 years.

After a thorough exercise, Naidu had announced last week his government's decision to waive farm loan of up to Rs 1.50 lakh per family in the state. The opposition YSR-Congress and Congress attacked the government for not implementing the scheme fully and for allegedly not talking about loan waiver for self-help group women.

Getting down to the task in right earnest, Naidu had announced the government's decision to locate the capital in the Vijayawada-Guntur region in Coastal Andhra.

Naidu, who has grand plans for development of capital city, set up a panel to study the issue and to come up with suggestions. The committee has visited cities like Raipur, Chandigarh to study the models.

The chief minister, who has visited Singapore and Japan recently, has sought the help of the government and other agencies in the two countries for the task.

The process of land pooling, instead of land acquisition, has begun in Guntur district, which was welcomed by farmers in many villages though residents of some other villages appear to be not game for it immediately.

A significant success in the last six months is improved power supply position with the state government making arrangements for purchase of power and also for energy production as per future requirements.

Naidu had also tried to woo investors from India and abroad towards attracting investments into the state. Hero Motors is among the prominent companies, which would make investments in the state, according to the state government.

Several MoUs have been signed and discussions were held during Naidu's visits to Japan and Singapore towards investments in the state and help in the development of the state.

The state is now faced with a Rs 16,000 crore budgetary deficit, but the state's economy registered a 6.94 per cent growth at constant prices during the first half of the 2014-15 fiscal, according to the state government.

The growth was propelled by positive trends in agriculture, real estate, banking and insurance, mining and services sectors.

"The overall performance of all sectors is satisfactory. Contribution of the services sector is more than 57 per cent while participation/role of industry sector (26 pc) can be improved to realise the full potential of the economy to achieve stable growth and development," an official release said.

The Gross State Domestic Product in the July-September quarter (Q2) was estimated to be Rs 50,144 crore as against Rs 47,103 crore during the corresponding period last year, registering a growth of 6.46 per cent as against the national average of 5.33 per cent.

A bolt from the blue jolted the fledgling state with cyclone 'Hudhud' wreaking havoc in Visakhapatnam. However, Naidu's efforts in relief and rebuilding the region have come from appreciation from several quarters.

The state government hopes that the Centre would grant special status and other benefits promised to the residuary state (post formation of Telangana) in the Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Act in the near future.

Meanwhile, Andhra Pradesh found itself in disputes with Telangana on several issues during the last six months, mainly over sharing of electricity, water, distribution of institutions that existed in undivided AP, funds in the labour department.

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