Thiruvananthapuram

Protest brews against proposed underpass at Enchakkal p3

Corporation Health standing committe chairman Sreekumar inaugurating a meeting of the Highway Protection Council in Thiruvananthapuram on Monday.

Corporation Health standing committe chairman Sreekumar inaugurating a meeting of the Highway Protection Council in Thiruvananthapuram on Monday.   | Photo Credit: S MAHINSHA

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The highway protection council, which has been formed to spearhead the movement against the proposed activity.

Protest is brewing over the proposed vehicular underpass that has been planned at Enchakkal as part of the ongoing development of the Kazhakuttom-Mukkola NH-66 bypass.

Residents on either side of the Chakka-Enchakkal-Muttathara corridor have decried the efforts being made by the National Highway Authority of India (NHAI) to go ahead with the existing design of the underpass which, they claim, was unscientific and envisaged with lack of foresight. They have instead raised the demand of constructing a flyover supported by pillars underneath at the Enchakkal junction.

The highway protection council, which has been formed to spearhead the movement against the proposed activity, fear that the construction of a wall-like structure could isolate parts of Enchakkal, Vallakadavu and others, thereby creating great hardships for its residents. Besides, the development activity must be undertaken only by protecting the interests of traders who functioned in the area.

According to council coordinator Shameer Ali, the ongoing construction threatened to virtually split the region into two parts. This will leave the local population no option but to mostly frequent service roads. The inadequate width of the service roads and the entry points to the bypass is likely to hinder the passage of ambulances and other vehicles. “On the other hand, constructing a flyover with pillars underneath will provide passage as well as create space for parking,” he said.

Inaugurating a meeting organised on Monday to chalk out their future course of action, Thiruvananthapuram Corporation health standing committee chairman K. Sreekumar, who represents the Chakka ward, called for combined efforts to prevent the construction work that has been designed with lack of proper planning and adequate deliberations with the local community.

Perunthanni ward councilor Chinchu, who presided over the meeting, claimed that the proposed work in its current form could pose the threat of frequent water-logging in the area. Echoing the view, Vallakkadavu Muslim Jamaath president A. Saifudeen Haji said that the lack of drainage facilities could also lead to flooding, besides other unforeseen repercussions.

Thiruvananthapuram Corporation councilors V. Giri, Shajitha Nazar, former councilors S. Vijayakumar, P. Padmakumar and representatives of various residents’ associations also took part in the meeting. (EOM/SBG)

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Printable version | Jan 19, 2020 4:15:57 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Thiruvananthapuram/protest-brews-against-proposed-underpass-at-enchakkal-p3/article22445408.ece

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