The construction of the state guest house at Visakhapatnam has been a controversial issue from its initial development days. In a recent update concerning the construction of the guest house, a PIL has been submitted in the Andhra Pradesh High Court challenging the government order issued by the YSRCP state government to acquire 30 acres of land from the Greyhound training centre for the construction of the said guest house. Greyhound is an elite division of the state police primarily created to monitor and fight insurgency threats and Maoist attacks. The PIL petition was submitted by Gadde Tirupathi Rao, General Secretary of Amaravati Parirakshana Joint Action Committee. In the filed PIL petition, Mr. Rao argued that the present actions of the YSRCP government to acquire the land would create a huge loss of Rs. 1,000 crores of public money.
This is for the second time that the construction of the state guest house in Visakhapatnam has been challenged at the level of the High Court. Regarding the first petition, the High Court had already issued an interim order to the state government asking not to initiate any further construction work at the site. The first petition was submitted on the speculations that the construction was being made primarily to cater to the transfer of the office of the Chief Minister as a strategy of projecting Visakhapatnam as the executive capital.
In the present PIL petition, Rao has criticised the YSRCP state government’s decision to acquire land from the Greyhound training centre. He said this decision would be a threat to the safety and security of the commandos deployed there. In addition to this, Rao has also argued in the petition that there is a strategic importance to the location of the greyhound training centre and the state government’s action to construct a state guest house would expose the identity of the commandos posted there and further put their lives at risk. Mr. Rao also termed the YSRCP government’s decision as illegal, irrational, and a guaranteed wastage of public money.