Setback for AP govt? World Bank still ‘considering’ financing Amaravati

A panel of experts who visited the state said that the land-pooling was ‘satisfactory’ but still needed an ‘investigation’.
Setback for AP govt? World Bank still ‘considering’ financing Amaravati
Setback for AP govt? World Bank still ‘considering’ financing Amaravati
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In a major setback for the Andhra Pradesh government, the World Bank is still considering financing the Amaravati project.

The World Bank, which was supposed to provide loans to develop the capital city Amaravati, is initiating a probe into the resettlement of farmers instead, reported The Times of India.

The state government had earlier acquired thousands of acres of land from farmers for developing the capital region and provided them compensation and resettlement.

In September, a team of experts from the World Bank had visited Andhra Pradesh to investigate the allegations of forced land-pooling and the alleged irregularities committed by the government.

TOI reported that a 102-page report filed by experts suggested: “Management will decide whether to move ahead with the proposed project only after appropriate analysis of potential project risks and impacts has been undertaken and adequate mitigation measures to address them have developed and consulted upon to the satisfaction of the bank.”

The experts in their report said that the works taken up by the Andhra Pradesh Capital Region Development Authority (APCRDA) was ‘satisfactory’ but still needs an ‘investigation’, as there been have allegations of non-compliance of guidelines of the bank and involuntary resettlement.

Meanwhile, the AP government has set up a Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV)—Amaravati Smart City Corporation Ltd with the Union Ministry of Urban Development selecting Amaravati for the Smart City initiative.

A share capital of Rs 20 crore has already been authorized towards the project.

According to the order issued by the Principal Secretary of Urban Development, Ajay Jain, “The paid-up capital will be Rs 5 lakh divided into 50,000 equity shares of Rs 10 each. This will also be increased when required,” reported The Hindu Business Line.

The report further added that the SPV will be chaired by State Principal Secretary, Municipal Administration and Urban Development, with 10 other members, including Ramesh Chand, member of the NITI Aayog.

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