Special correspondent

Minister for Ports M.V. Raghavan inaugurates work

KOZHIKODE: Minister for Ports M.V. Raghavan on Tuesday inaugurated work on a Rs.34-lakh passenger terminal at Beypore port reassuring all concerned that they need not have any fears about the safety of the facility.

Seeking to ally fears about its safety voiced by some groups, the Minister said new pillars would replace the ones in the existing building.

Experts from other departments and agencies would be free to assess the safety of the structure.

Parison Group which had been awarded works for the development of the Beypore port had been asked to give a detailed plan within two weeks.

Development works would be executed under the Build Operate and Transfer (BOT) system. The State's share would be 26 per cent , two per cent more than the Government's share in the Vizhinjam port project, the Minister said pointing out that it would ensure Government control over the Beypore port.

V.K.C. Mamed Koya, Beypore-MLA, who presided, appealed to the Government to keep the recently built 160-metre wharf under the port department.

District Panchayat president K. P. Kunhammedkutty, District Panchayat member Edathodi Radhakrishnan, panchayat member K. Venugopal, vice-president of the Malabar Chamber of Commerce and Port Officer Chandrasekharan Nair also spoke.

Work on the new passenger terminal is expected to be completed within four months. About 100 ships operate between Beypore and Lakshadweep on an average every year.