The work to develop a four-km canal stretch as part of the proposed Mahe-Vadakara inland navigation link for connecting rivers and backwaters in the region will begin soon.
The Inland Navigation Department has initiated steps for inviting tender for prequalification and execution of the works.
Engineers at the division office here on Monday said the National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD)-aided project for developing the four-km stretch from the Moozhikkal regulator to the Kanninada bridge would be completed in two or three years on awarding the works.
The estimated cost of the project for excavating the four-km stretch of the 17.62-km Mahe-Vadakara canal is Rs.21.5 crore.
The canal will connect the artificial waterway links joining the rivers and the backwaters to be part of the waterway. The Mahe- Vadakara canal will link the Murat (Kuttyadi) river in the south and the Mahe river in the north.
The three-km canal being developed will have a bottom width of 32 metres. The engineers said the work could be completed in two to three years. This stretch of the canal was an important portion of the proposed Mahe-Vadakara canal, they said.
The four-decade old proposal for the Mahe-Vadakara canal still remains on paper. Earlier, a revised proposal for the development of the entire stretch of the proposed canal was submitted by the State government to the Ministry of Surface Transport.
The Mahe-Vadakara canal has been planned as a major link for the development of the inland water transport network in the State. The canal will connect the existing navigation link, West Coast Canal (WCC), stretching from the southern end of Thiruvananthapuram to the Kasaragod district.
The Mahe-Vadakara stretch is in the Kottappuram (Kodungallour)- Kasaragod section of the WCC extending 361 km. The land required for the canal had been acquired in 1965.
The portion of the WCC from Kollam to Kottappuram (168 km) has already been declared as National Waterway III. A navigation link exists from Kottappuram to Vadakara and from Hosdurg in Kasaragod to Valapattanam in Kannur.
Mahe-Vadakara inland navigation link Work to be completed in two to three years
Work to be completed in two
to three years