City of Dreams
Having run a truncated Andhra Pradesh for two-and-a-half years without a capital city, chief minister Chandrababu Naidu is dreaming big. Foster + Partners, the famous architectural practice led by Norman Foster, is expected to present its plans on February 22. Naidu himself has talked of creating a modern city in a historical setting. The capital is to be called Amaravati, the abode of the immortals, and located on the banks of the Krishna. Apparently, part of Naidu’s inspiration for the capital are the sets of grandiose epics such as Baahubali and Gautamiputra Satakarni, the latter starring his brother-in-law and Telugu Desam Party MLA Nandamuri Balakrishna. The Amaravati Capital Development Authority, headed by Naidu, has also announced it will float Rs 1,000 crore bonds to fund development. Naidu is also hoping the World Bank will pitch in to help build a city which, in 20 years, is expected to become home to over 11 million people.