Vellimadukunnu-Mananchira Road needs to be widened

The Mananchira-Vellimadukunnu Road Action Committee will stage a hunger strike in front of the District Collectorate here on Saturday demanding that the State government complete the acquisition of land for widening the 8.4 km stretch of Vellimadukunnu – Mananchira Road in the city.

Addressing a news conference here on Thursday, the committee president and historian M.G.S. Narayanan, working president Mathew Kattikkana and general secretary M.P. Vasudevan said that M.K. Raghavan would inaugurate the hunger strike at 10 a.m. A. Pradeepkumar, MLA and Mayor A.K. Premajam would address the protesters.

Dr. Narayanan said that the activists of the residents’ associations along the Vellimadukunnu, representatives of political parties, cultural leaders and social activists would take part in the hunger strike from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

He said that the widening of the road has been included in the Kozhikode City Road Improvement Project (KCRIP) several years ago. But the project has been in limbo reportedly owing to the lackadaisical attitude of the government departments in acquiring land for the purpose and distributing funds.

Dr. Narayanan said that Vellimadukunnu- Mananchira Road was one major entry points to the city. The existing width of the road was the same in the documents shown in the survey conducted during the pre-Independence era of 1935.

This road had not seen any development even after seven decades. Now the stretch was choked with thousands of vehicles throughout day and night, he said.

The Vellimadukunnu- Mananchira Road was included in the KCRIP along with Stadium- Puthiyara, Karaparamba-Kalluthankkadavu, Kovoor-Vellimadukunnu, Panaththazham- CWRDM, Gandhi- Road- Mini Bypass and Francis Road- Mankkavu projects.

As per a government order dated September 8, 2008, a sum of Rs 52 crore was allotted for the development of Mananchira—Vellimadukunnu road.

It was also announced in the 2008-09 budget. A notification under section 4 (1) under Land Acquisition Act was published in 2011. The draft declaration was done in 2013.

However, the committee members led by Dr. Narayanan met Chief Minister Oommen Chandy when the acquisition process got delayed. Consequently a meeting was summoned at the Kozhikode guest house on April 20, 2013. Review meetings held in the presence of the Minister for Local Administration mentioned of completing the acquisition in a year and completing the construction within two years. However, nothing materialized all these months, he said.

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