Focus on land acquisition for NH 66 widening again

The much-delayed four/six-laning of the National Highway 66 stretch from Talapady in Kasaragod to Kazhakuttam in Thiruvananthapuram is in the limelight again with the issue of 3A notification under the National Highway Act of 1956 for the last stretch from Kazhakutam to Kadampattukonam.

The 3A notification has been published for the 30-km corridor that comes under the 172.8-km Cherthala-Kazhakuttam corridor of the NH 66 that is to be developed with a 45-metre right of way (ROW).

The National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) needs 93.418 hectares in the Kazhakuttam-Kadampattukonam stretch and this comes under the taluks of Chirayinkeezhu, Varkala and Thiruvananthapuram. Landowners have been given 21 days to raise objections, if any, to the Competent Authority, Land Acquisition, NH.

Boundary stones

A top NHAI official told The Hindu that boundary stones have been placed in most of the places to be acquired. After 21 days and inquiry under 3C, the 3D notification under the NH Act would be issued. The 3(D) notification is issued when the entire details of land to be acquired such as area, name of landowners, etc., are published after completing the survey. The next stage of land acquisition, 3(G), would be to award compensation to the landowners.

The compensation for those surrendering land would be as per the Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Act, 2013. The NHAI, the executing agency, has set December 2020 as the deadline for completing the NH 66 four/six-lane works.

Kerala has already given ₹330 crore to the NHAI as the first tranche of the 25% cost of the remaining land to be acquired for six-laning of 526 km of NH 66 as demanded by Ministry of Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH). The State’s share is being provided by the Kerala Infrastructure Investment Fund Board (KIIFB) tasked to make available ₹5,200 crore, 25% cost of the remaining land to be acquired in the State. The funds will be made available from the ₹14,000 crore earmarked by KIIFB for land acquisition for development projects.

The draft Detailed Project Report is being worked out by the consultant for the NHAI. The work would be tendered once the land was acquired and handed over, an NHAI official said.

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Printable version | Aug 8, 2022 2:21:15 am |