Staff Reporter

Team includes technical, landscaping experts

Visit coincides with the proposal to release land

‘Tecom has no objection to proposal’

KOCHI: The multi-crore Smart City project proposed in Kochi received a shot in the arm on Wednesday with a group of officials from the Dubai-based Tecom, promoters of the project, paying a visit to the project site. The team comprised Baju George, Director, Tecom, Fareed Abdul Rahman, Executive Director, and Yousuf Al-Khaja, Project Manager. The team was also accompanied by technical and landscaping experts indicating that the project was slowly getting off the drawing board and was gathering momentum at the implementation level.

This was for the second time a team from Tecom was visiting Kochi ever since the State Government had entered into an agreement with the company. The visit coincided with the Government proposal to release three acres of land from the land already earmarked for the pro ject for the purpose of rehabil itation, and to grant alternative land in lieu of it at Mapranam near Chittethukara.

However, District Collector A.P.M. Mohammed Hanish said the officials did not raise any objection and expressed their willingness to accept the alternative land.

The district administration recommended the proposal of alternative land so that rehabilitation package was implemented based on the principle of close proximity.

The package declared by the Government proposed to provide six cents of land free-of-cost to all the 61 families to be evicted from Edachira. Besides, those who would lose more than 20 cents would be entitled to purchase additional five cents at the price equivalent to what they are paid for the land taken from them. As per this package, a little over six acres were required for rehabilitating these families. Of this, 2.92 acres had been already identified at Edachira, and another three acres were identified at Mapranam. However, the evictees opposed this as it was away from Edachira.

Following this, the Collector made the proposal of releasing three acres from the land identified for Smart City while giving the land at Mapranam in lieu of it.