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Saturday, Dec 22, 2001

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Southern States - Andhra Pradesh

22 Buddhist sites set to become tourist spots
By Our Special Correspondent

HYDERABAD, DEC. 21. The Government has identified as many as 22 Buddhist sites in the State for developing them as tourist attractions with the investment coming mostly from private parties.

According to the Minister for Tourism, Mr T. Srinivas Yadav, who announced this in the Assembly on Friday during question time, these sites included Nagarjunakonda, Dantapuram, Amaravathi, Bhattiprolu, Ghantasala, Saligramam, Ramathirtha, Nelakondapalli, Chandavaram, Thotla Konda and Bhavi Konda.

Replying to a supplementary from Mr G. Babu Rao, Telugu Desam, the Minister said Rs. 1 crore was released for landscaping and laying roads for the Thotla Konda and Bhavi Konda sites.

IR 64 paddy variety: The Agriculture Minister, Mr. Vadde Sobhanadreswara Rao, told Mr N. Narsimhaiah and Mr S. Rajaiah, both CPI(M), that IR 64 variety of paddy was being discouraged on the ground that it was of short-duration. However, he denied the charge by members that this crop was not being given insurance benefit, saying that crop-cutting experiments were to go first. Once this was over, a report would be submitted to the Centre and the amounts released.

Under a contingency plan for kharif, seed was suplied at 50 per cent subsidy, at a cost of Rs. 19.25 crores, covering paddy, sunflower, maize, blackgram, greengram, redgram, bengalgram and gingelly, he said, admitting that the seed failed to sprout at some places due to heavy rain.

New Schools: The Primary Education Minister, Mr M. Venkateswara Rao, came out with an announcement in reply to a question raised by Mrs S. Hymavathy Devi, Telugu Dasam, and three others, that 7,351 new primary schools were coming up from 2001-2002 academic year. In this direction, 4,352 primary schools had been upgraded into upper primary schools during 2001-2002.

Mr. Venkateswara Rao also announced a massive recruitment plan to take in 4,352 maths and science teachers for these new schools planned, as many others, each for social sciences and first and second languages. The exercise was on.

The Minister said it was the Government's intention to have one primary school within one km radius and one upper primary school within 2-km radius.

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