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High-speed railway map yet to be ready

M.P. Praveen
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DMRC conducting survey of alignment, to prepare detailed project report

The district administration is waiting for the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) to wrap up its survey to shine light on the alignment of the proposed high speed rail corridor.

Kerala High Speed Rail Corporation Ltd. has engaged DMRC to prepare detailed project report.

“We will be able to begin acquiring land only after getting a report on the alignment and extent of land needed for the project in the district. DMRC is undertaking a survey and we have asked for a report, which is expected by November,” said District Collector P.I. Sheikh Pareed on Tuesday. Till then, the district administration hardly has any role in this project, he said. But the survey for the project gave jitters to the residents when land within a bracket of 300 metres to 500 metres width was marked out for alignment. Mr. Pareed, however, said the final alignment would involve only 15 metres. He said the markings were just a precaution, part of preliminary assessment, to avoid structures and places of worship along the way.

Apprehension of local people about the markings made as part of the preliminary survey was raised at a meeting convened to clear the air in this regard in August. The Collector also soothed the fears of the people by citing the government direction that had asked for an alignment that spares houses, places of worship, and heavily populated area.

T. Balakrishnan, chairman and managing director of Kerala High Speed Rail Corporation Limited, in an interview to The Hindu on the sidelines of the Emerging Kerala summit had said only 1,600 to 1, 700 families required to be evicted along the 200-km stretch of the proposed high-speed rail corridor from Thiruvananthapuram to Ernakulam. He said reports that about 15,000 families would have to be evicted were ‘baseless’. Mr. Balakrishnan had said only 250 hectares was required for setting up the track up to Ernakulam, which means only two-and-a-half households need to be removed per acre for the project. As per the tentative alignment, the proposed rail corridor passes through Aikaranad north and south villages, Aluva East, Amballoor, Irumpanam, Karukutty, Kunnathunadu, Kidangoor, Marampilly, Mookkannoor, Punithura, Sreemoolanagaram, Thrikkakara north and south, Thuravoor, Angamaly, and Vadavucode in the district.

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