A resolution moved in the Kochi Corporation Council on Saturday demanding the government takeover of Thammanam-Pulleppady Road by including it in the second phase development work of Kochi metro was passed with objections from the Opposition Left Democratic Front (LDF).
The resolution moved by the ruling United Democratic Front (UDF) councillor T.J. Vinod was backed by Leno Jacob.
The Opposition demanded that a discussion be held with the Chief Minister to remove legal hurdles in the construction of the road. Opposition councillor M. Anilkumar said the construction would get delayed inordinately unless steps were taken to remove the legal hiccups.
The notification issued for land acquisition for road development is set to expire on May 24.
About Rs. 390 crore is required for acquiring land and subsequent construction of the road. As per rules regulating land acquisition, 80 per cent of the project cost should be deposited in advance before draft declaration. However, there is no clarity as yet on how to raise that amount.
The project can progress smoothly only if prior permission is secured for extending the deadline of the notification.
Otherwise, the road would have to be developed as per Central government norms that call for advance deposit of the entire project cost, Opposition pointed out.Major expense
This could entail major expenses for the State government and the corporation, which is already reeling under a financial crisis. It could also lead to the project being delayed. The council and the Mayor should have made timely interventions to get the notification period extended, the Opposition said.
Councillors of the Opposition also protested against the Mayor’s alleged decision not to discuss in the Council the contents of a letter by the District Collector on the expiry of the notification.