VISAKHAPATNAM: The political unrest and series of protests affected various businesses, of which real estate is one of the top three most badly hit sectors in Vizag region. As many as 50,000 construction workers and labourers lost their livelihood locally and majority of them migrated to cities like Bhuvaneswar, Hyderabad, Bangalore, Chennai and other places.
The Samaikyandhra agitation, APNGOs’ strike and state bifurcation issue gave a big jolt to the realty business. The government lost over `100 crore from stamps and registration revenue in Vizag urban district during the first half of the current fiscal year.
Lack of clarity on the state bifurcation, even after the Union Cabinet approved the Telangana Draft Bill, the realtors and investors are still confused whether to continue with the sale and purchase of plots and flats in Vizag Region.
“Even though the APNGOs have withdrawn their stir, the business has not geared up. Normally, the land registrations and other business transactions gain momemtum from October onwards. While 27,000 registrations worth `190 crore took place between April-November 2012, between April-November 2013 only `130 crore was generated through 20,000 registartions,” said R Damodara Rao, district registrar, Stamps and Registrations department, Vizag Urban. There are total eight sub-registrar offices in urban district and most big business transactions are coming up under the urban district.
The farmers and locals of various mandals in and around of Srikakulam, Narasannapeta, Bobbili, Parvathipuram, Vizianagaram, Anakapalle, Bheemili, Tagrapuvalasa, Yelamanchili, Pendurty, S.Kota, Devarapalli and Chodavaram areas are not selling their properties since the past one year. They are expecting a boom in the realty sector post bifurcation. Meanwhile, the investors are also apprehensive and are not too keen about purchasing land.
“It’s not only is real estate that has been affected. All business deals have had to bear the brunt of the agitations. Even the Telangana businessmen also suffering due to the bifurcation. I gave advance to purchase 12 acres of land near Anandapuram for a construction venture. But, could not get the registration due to Samaikyandhra stir. Now, the farmers are demanding more money. I had dropped the venture. For the past 15-years, 100 workers have worked for me. With business looking bleak, I have asked them to look for an alternative employment,” said Dandu Gopalakrishnam Raju, real estate businessman.
There are over 1,000 housing projects, apartments and gated communities in the region. Banks are also coming forward with loans. However, the people even the middle class are postponing their plans to buy flats.
“Even a common man who has no direct role in the state bifurcation is also thinking of ways to make the most of the situation. This year our home loan business has been encouraging. We are organising loan mela and road shows,” observed KVV Gopala Rao, senior manager of a nationalised bank.
Once the agitations ended, cyclones and rains played spoil sport. For the next three months no change should be expected. After the general elections, the condition of the sector can improve, said MS Babu, a realtor.