Special Correspondent

Government to bear 50 pc of project cost

High Court ordered relocation of Pangode market

Thiruvananthapuram: A high-level meeting convened by Chief Minister V.S. Achuthanandan here on Friday decided that the government would support the City Corporation’s effort to get the approval of the High Court for the modernisation of the wholesale fish market at Pangode.

The government would implead itself in the petition to be filed by the Corporation seeking the consent of the High Court for the modernisation project. It would also bear 50 per cent of the project cost.

A committee including the Ministers of Revenue and Local Self Government, the Mayor and V. Sivankutty MLA has been set up to facilitate the transfer of 39 cents of revenue ‘poramboke’ land required for the project.

The meeting was convened in the light of the fast approaching deadline set by the High Court for the Corporation to relocate the fish market or close it down. Mayor C. Jayan Babu apprised the meeting that efforts to relocate the market had to be aborted due to the failure to get land.

The High Court order was issued on the basis of a petition filed by local people highlighting pollution and health problems caused by the unsanitary conditions in the market and the chaotic traffic conditions on the Vazhuthacaud- Pangode route.

The initial Court order directed the Corporation to shift the market from Pangode. Following an appeal, the Corporation was offered the option to take up the modernisation project immediately or relocate the facility. Two major modernisation projects failed to take off due to various reasons, leading to the High Court order to relocate the facility.

Secretary, Department of Local Self Government, T.K. Jose said the government had agreed to part-finance the Rs.8 crore modernisation project.

“The proposal involves a redesign of the market complex on the lines of the Jurong fish market in Singapore. It includes effluent treatment plants and international standards in terms of hygiene and operational facilities. The execution depends on the approval of the Court and the availability of 39 cents of land,” he said.