Clouds of uncertainty hang over the Ennore Manali Road Improvement Project (EMRIP) with hurdles such the shifting of structures in NTO Kuppam and Cherian Nagar, eviction of fishermen near Chennai Port Trust (ChPT) zero gate and relocation of Bhavani Amman temple standing in the way of the completion of the project.
While ChPT asked the fishermen to vacate the land they had ‘encroached on’ by Saturday, the eviction notice to the tenements of Cherian Nagar was issued on Monday and they have been given two weeks’ time. But, the fishermen who dried fish on a piece of vacant land in front of zero gate, refused to vacate the site on Saturday and laid a new set of conditions. ChPT is yet to spell out its stand on relocating Bhavani Amman temple.
Annoyed over the developments, Port users say this project can be completed by June 2013 only with the State government’s support. They also expressed disappointment with the ChPT and State government officials for being soft on the fishermen/shopkeepers.
The National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) will hold a review meeting with the State government officials in the Secretariat on Tuesday with regard to the issues of shifting structures in NTO Kuppam and Cherian Nagar, traffic congestion and the delay in shifting transformers and 10 electricity boxes along the Ennore-Manali highway.
To widen the approach road in front of zero gate, ChPT had to evict the fishermen.
After enumerating the number of fishermen in the area, ChPT constructed 146 fishing stalls and was in the process of constructing 42 more stalls.
The lease letters were handed over to them recently. However, they declined to move out immediately and sought 10 more days to shift their belongings.
Rs. 84 crore sanctioned
While addressing members of Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry, Principal Industries Secretary N. Sundaradevan said the Finance Department has sanctioned Rs.84 crore for improving the connectivity from EMRIP to Ennore and Kattupalli ports as sought by Japanese firm Toshiba. The work would commence soon.