US consulate gets land for permanent facility in Hyderabad

July 22nd, 2011 - 6:30 pm ICT by IANS  

Hyderabad, July 22 (IANS) The Andhra Pradesh government has allotted 12 acres of land in the financial district of Gachibowli for a permanent facility of the United States consulate.

An agreement to lease the land was Friday signed here by US Consul General Katherine Dhanani, Director of Andhra Pradesh Industrial Infrastructure Corporation (APIIC) B.R. Meena and Principal Secretary (Political) R.M. Gonela in the presence of Andhra Pradesh Chief Secretary S.V. Prasad.

Terming the agreement an “important milestone”, Dhanani said the establishment of a permanent facility would strengthen the relationship between Indians and Americans.

“As President Obama has said, and Hillary Clinton repeated in Delhi this past week, the relationship between India and the United States will be a defining partnership in the 21st century. We see our presence in Hyderabad as a strong sign of this enduring friendship,” she said.

“This is an important cornerstone in the relationship between the two nations. A consulate helps us achieve and maintain this relationship,” Prasad said.

“There has always been a significant association between people of Andhra Pradesh and United States,” he added.

According to a statement from the US consulate, a series of site surveys and inspections will be conducted in preparation for the signing of a lease deed. The consulate will break ground only following the signing of a lease deed.

Currently, the US consulate is functioning from the historic Paigah Palace building in Begumpet.

The consulate was opened in October 2008. Then US ambassador to India David C. Mulford had said the consulate will work out of the temporary facility for six years before moving into the proposed permanent facility to be built at a cost of $60 million in Gachibowli.

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