The sight of heavy machines at work coupled with a huge line of trucks and tractors carrying construction material, made the villagers realise that temporary Secretariat is going to be a reality soon.These machines, drilling the ground for pillars, have raised the confidence levels of the people that the capital is going to be a reality soon. Though there is an underlying fear that they would be displaced, once the building is ready, the villagers are happy to see first step for the new capital.
“We have to evacuate this place giving way for the big officers and leaders but we will certainly be around and will be a part of the new capital," asserted 65-year-old Kondaveeti Koteswara Rao of Malkapuram village. Rao is among one of the 500 families in Malkapuram, who are likely to be evicted by the government to widen the Mandadam-Inavolu road, leading to the temporary Secretariat.
“This Secretariat has come and we have to leave, but it is good, the area is slowly turning into a city as promised by Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu. We were promised houses, though the officials haven't told us where the houses would be allotted. We are sure of good times ahead," Rao asserted.
Kamineni Chennakesava Rao, an octogenarian from Venkatapalem village said that the construction work cleared all doubts over the capital. “There has been a lot of confusion and uncertainty. We have lost two crops as we have given our lands to the government in pooling. Nothing has been done and there is a lot of talk that the capital will not come here," he said as he watched his buffaloes grazing in the abandoned banana field.
“The machines have been deployed and the men are working there. A huge building is said to be coming up from where the CM is said to be working from June. I am confident that the capital is not a promise, but a reality," he asserted.The uncertainty among the people of these villages is weeding out with over 18 huge machines working all through the day.
These machines are new to them and they keep visiting the site to see the machines work. “We thought that some of us would get work here (temporary Secretariat site) but the workers are sourced from West Bengal and Tamil Nadu. They are paid once-in-a-month and have to work for eight hours a day," Koteswara Rao said, who spends his time watching the vehicles.
When asked about the same, “What can we do now? There is no agriculture. We thought we could do this construction work. But they are not taking us. We can't work for eight hours a day and can't wait for one month to get the pay," he said and asserted that they are being told that they would get the work once the construction of other buildings begins.