Naidu Announces 27-Point Development Programme For Tribals At Araku

Chief Minister Chandrababu Naidu announced a 27-point development programme for the upliftment of tribal people. Education, free electricity, temple, fibre grid, and infrastructure are included in his programme.

Araku Valley (Visakhapatnam): Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu came up with a 27-point development programme for the upliftment of tribal people in the state.

Naidu was addressing a public meeting held on Wednesday on the occasion of International Day of World’s Indigenous People at Araku Valley. The Tribal Welfare Department held the celebrations for the second consecutive term at Araku.

The Chief Minister assured the tribal people of 75 units of free electricity to every household in the tribal regions.  He announced financial help for those tribal students wishing to pursue higher education abroad.

Naidu has announced setting up of residential schools in the region for those studying class IV onwards. All the schools and colleges in the region would be converted into residential schools where the inmates could have a quality meal, he said. He also promised internet and TV programmes through fibre grid at a minimum cost of Rs 200 for the residents of the region.

The chief minister said he was keen on elevating Araku to a corporate business centre by providing export facilities for coffee beans grown in the region and other forest produce. He advised the tribal people to focus on organic cultivation.

The TDP chief promised to construct a Tirumala Tirupathi Devasthanam Temple at Araku Valley as sought by the locals. Though he assured the construction of temple earlier, it did not materialize as of yet, he said.

On the tourism front, Naidu assured that a tourism circuit with Araku as the main centre would come up in the region with an estimated expenditure of Rs.10 crore. The tourism department was planning to hold a balloon festival next year to attract tourist footfall, he said.

Naidu laid the foundation stones to various development schemes worth Rs. 260.31 crore on the occasion. He instructed the officials of the Integrated Tribal Development Agency (ITDA) to sanction Rs.5 crore for providing underground drainage facility in Araku Valley.

The government was mulling over increasing the income of each panchayat in the region. Every panchayat should have an income of Rs 10,000 a month, he suggested. He assured an apparel park in Araku collaboration just like  the Apparel Park in Visakhapatnam.

Naidu, while launching a health website for the benefit of tribal people, said plans were afoot to make Araku region as a medical and health hub. Those who had been suffering from long illnesses could stay at sanatoriums and receive medical aid here, Naidu said. Nature here was so beautiful and conducive to healing illnesses, he added.

Referring to bauxite mining, the chief minister said his government decided not to take up bauxite mining in the region, honoring the wishes of the tribal people.

Governor ESL Narasimhan was another chief guest along with Naidu. Deputy Chief Minister N. Rajappa, Tribal Welfare Minister Nakka Anandababu, Panchayat Minister Ch. Ayyanna Patrudu, Human Resources Minister Ganta Srinivasa Rao and Araku MLA Kidari Sarweswara Rao, were among those present at the meeting.

Earlier, they were accorded a warm welcome by the tribal folk with their rhythmic traditional group dance “Thimsa.”  The dance assumed prominence only next to Kuchipudi, Naidu remarked.

The chief minister and governor went around the stalls erected on the premises. As many as 40 stalls were put up displaying various handicrafts, artifacts, forest produce and other traditional objects used and produced by tribal people.

In view of the Maoist activities in the Agency, security was beefed up by the police both at the NTR grounds, where celebrations were held, and in the abutting villages.

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