The Transformation of Regional Towns in Coastal Andhra
Photographs and text: Prof. Carol Upadhya (ProGlo Programme Co-Director)
Coastal Andhra Pradesh is a productive agricultural region dotted with large and dynamic provincial towns that historically have been key nodes of commerce, education, and government, connecting the rural hinterland with cities and countries outside the region. With the gradual movement of rich agricultural families to urban areas and a pattern of transnational mobility emerging amongst the regional elites since the 1970s, new global connections have been forged. Complex flows of people, finance, investments, and philanthropy have transformed these regional towns through changing lifestyles, a new consumer culture signalled by the entry of posh retail outlets and shopping malls, and the construction of upscale housing developments. NRIs constitute a large proportion of the market for such housing.