Telugu cultural centre caught in fund crunch


The Telugu Samskrutika Niketanam coming up atop Kailasagiri in Visakhapatnam.—File photo: C.V. SUBRAHMANYAMThe Telugu Cultural and Heritage Centre coming up atop Kailasagiri under a joint venture between VUDA and World Telugu Federation (WTF) is caught in fund crunch.

Representatives of the WTF, at a meeting last month, represented that the federation had spent Rs.3.5 crore on the art work depicting various episodes of history and culture, and wanted the VUDA to get funds from the Union Culture Department.

Prior to the meeting, when the WTF had approached the Union Culture Department seeking funds, it was asked to effect transfer of land on which the centre called ‘Telugu Samskrutika Niketanam’ was located.

Consequently, the WTF had approached the VUDA seeking its help in getting funds, VUDA Vice-Chairman N. Yuvaraj said.

“Work estimated to coast about Rs.6 crore is still to be completed. Unless funds are released to pay for work completed, further progress is difficult,” the WTF has maintained. Noted art director Thota Tarani has taken up the work on recreating the episodes.

“Now it is for the VUDA Board to take a call on the issue. It is also not clear whether the Union Culture Department will sanction money to the VUDA,” Dr. Yuvaraj said.

Joint venture

The WTF and the VUDA have come together to set up the museum showcasing culture and heritage of Telugus. Former Chief Minister Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy laid the foundation in 2008 for the centre scheduled to be completed in 24 months.

The VUDA completed the civil works by spending Rs.12 crore, it was learnt.

Dr. Yuvaraj said the VUDA was sounding the Culture Department on whether it would be interested in running an auditorium proposed to be built with a cost of Rs.20 crore in the city. A design has been finalised for it.

Giving the status of various public-private participation projects, he said a proposal for change of consortium and design by Vaibhav for towers next to the VUDA office would be placed before the VUDA Board. The proposal for high-rise buildings by Vinayagar Promoters at Paradesipalem was dropped as land was not handed over to it.

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