Hyderabad: Two of the most-awaited skyways for the city, one from Patny to Kandlakoya via Suchitra Junction and the other, from near the Gymkhana Cricket Stadium or Jubilee Bus Stand in Secunderabad towards the Outer Ring Road till near Turkapally, have been hanging in balance since 2017.
When Municipal Administration and Urban Development Minister KT Rama Rao on Tuesday voiced his disappointment at the Union government for ignoring repeated pleas for handing over Defence land, he had reason to do so. The two skyways were proposed by the Hyderabad Metropolitan Development Authority way back in 2017. The aim was to decongest traffic in parts of Secunderabad, provide hassle-free movement in localities falling under the Secunderabad Cantonment Board (SCB) and ensure seamless commuting for people entering and exiting the city via the Nagpur Highway and Siddipet.
The first skyway, from Gymkhana Cricket Stadium connecting the ORR near Shamirpet, would ease traffic at multiple busy junctions including Alwal, Lothkunta and Bolarum. The three ramps (up and down) at strategic locations would also ease traffic in several localities falling under the SCB apart from reducing the commuting woes of people heading towards Siddipet and decongesting traffic on Rajiv Rahadari.
The second skyway from Patny to Kandlakoya also would have multiple ramps at major junctions like Suchitra Junction and Tadbund. Apart from decongesting the traffic in city limits near Suchitra Junction and again, the Secunderabad area, this skyway would ease traffic heading towards the Nagpur Highway and people commuting to and from Hyderabad to Nizamabad would be benefited. As per the original designs, both the skyways run-up to a length of 18.5 km each.
The plans were drawn out with funds worth Rs 5,000 crore to be readied as well, all in 2017 itself. But the projects remained on paper because the skyways would pass through Defence areas, for which the State government would need to acquire 160 km of land falling under the Local Military Authority’s jurisdiction. Till date, the Ministry of Defence (MoD) has not instructed the LMA to hand over the land to the State government.
And this, even after Minister KT Rama Rao requesting former Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman in 2018 and meeting Defence Minister Rajnath Singh in 2019. A request was also made to Minister of State for Home Affairs G Kishan Reddy in 2020. In 2018, the State government also said it was ready to allot 600 acres in Shamirpet in lieu of the land allocated by the LMA. Still, the promises from Delhi have not been kept, and the projects have been delayed for four years now.
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