16 January, 2021

Naidu-Jagan Reddy Political Battle Set To Raze Dream Capital Amaravati To The Ground

Amaravati was ex-Andhra CM Chandrababu Naidu's ambitious project. Rs 45,000 crore has already been spent on building the mega city but Jagan Reddy has put a spanner in the works

CGI City
A model of the proposed assembly at Amaravati
Naidu-Jagan Reddy Political Battle Set To Raze Dream Capital Amaravati To The Ground

There is a story in the Mahabharata about the Kauravas’ visit to the grand Maya Sabha the Pandavas had built in Indraprastha. Duryodhana is repeatedly flummoxed by the palace’s optical illusions—he trips into a pool assuming it’s a floor and walks into a wall as it resembles an archway. The Pandava princes mock him and he is left humiliated, albeit jealous of the magnificence of the palace and its visual splendours.

Amaravati, Andhra Pradesh’s upcoming capital, is yet to acquire the splendour of the Pandava palace and largely ­remains a mirage on the horizon. It is still in the initial stages of construction—while a few projects are in progress, many have not even begun. But “the city of the future” has already ­become a sticking point for Andhra’s new chief minister Jagan­mohan Reddy. In fact, Amaravati could soon become a grand illusion if Jagan has his way and scraps or downgrades the dream project of his predecessor, Chandrababu Naidu.

Naidu, who has dreamt big and planned bigger, had...



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