Unexpected physical obstructions had prevented the completion of dredging operations in the basin area.

Union Secretary for Shipping K. Mohandas, who reviewed the progress of the work on the International Container Transhipment Terminal (ICTT) here on Sunday issued orders for the completion of all dredging work for the project to be completed by the end of September.

Directive to firm

Mr. Mohandas is learnt to have asked the private company entrusted with the dredging operations to deploy special vessels to meet the requirement for clearing large areas where hard surface has been encountered.

The review meeting was attended by top officials of the Cochin Port Trust, including its Chairman N. Ramachandran; Senior Vice-President and Managing Director of DP World Subcontinent Region Anil Singh; representatives of Jaisu Shipping Company and officials from National Highways Authority of India and Rail Vikas Nigam Limited.

Unexpected physical obstructions had prevented the completion of dredging operations in the basin area though capital dredging of the outer and inner shipping channels had already been completed.

Lack of adequate depth had prevented the barge that brought four quay cranes for the ICTT from being berthed at the ICTT terminal.

The vessel, initially brought to the terminal, was shifted to the Ernakulam wharf of Cochin Port. Capital dredging for the basin area had begun in May this year.

The dredging operations are now expected to be completed by the end of September, in time for the likely commissioning of the project in October.

Assurance

The Union Minister for Shipping G. K. Vasan assured the Lok Sabha on July 27 that the first phase of the Vallarpadam ICTT would be ready by the month of October.

He had said that 95 per cent of the physical completion of the project had been achieved.

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