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US to open consulate in Hyderabad
Syed Amin Jafri in Hyderabad | March 03, 2006 14:36 IST
Last Updated: March 03, 2006 18:31 IST
The United States is opening a consulate in Hyderabad. This will be the fourth US consulate in the country, after Kolkata, Mumbai and Chennai.
The consulate will be operational from October 2007.
Disclosing this to newsmen after US President George Bush's visit to Acharya N G Ranga Agricultural University at Rajendranagar on Friday, Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Dr Y S Rajasekhar Reddy said, "Very befittingly, when he was here, the Government of India and the Government of the United States have agreed to open a US consulate in Hyderabad."
"Thousands of young people from the state are going to the United States every year on job and student visas. They have to go to Chennai to get the visas. Now, it will be possible for the people of the state to get the US visas from the consulate in Hyderabad," Dr Reddy said.
The state government has offered a 10-acre site at Madhapur near the Hitec City, the hub of the IT sector in Hyderabad, for housing the consulate. Since the construction of the buildings at the site will take time, the government has offered a state guesthouse -- Dilkusha -- to get the consulate functional without any delay.
Dilkusha guesthouse is located adjacent to the Raj Bhavan in the heart of the city. The guesthouse has 10 suites and a spacious parking lot. With Raj Bhavan being provided high security cover, the consulate next door will also have adequate security.
Raj Bhavan Road is also under round-the-clock surveillance and protests are not allowed on this stretch.
The American move for setting up another consulate in south India picked up momentum against the US Congress recently enacted a bill that allowed opening of another consulate in India. US Congressman Joseph Crowley, a Democrat representing New York, introduced the clause for the fourth consulate in India.
Bangalore, touted as India's silicon valley, was also in the race.