Delay in land acquisition emerges bottleneck for Nadikudi-Srikalahasti rail line

A seemingly innocuous issue relating to payment of compensation to five acres of land in two villages of Sattenapalli and Vinukonda mandals has emerged as a major bottleneck in the completion of the Nadikudi-Sirkalahasti new railway line project being undertaken by the South Central Railway. The project has been taken up as joint project, with the Andhra Pradesh government bearing 50% of the estimated cost of ₹2,289 crore.

The issue relating to payment of compensation to the land, which belonged to the Endowments Department, and was being used for agricultural purposes by local farmers, is now with the Arbitration Bench of the High Court. The Government of Andhra Pradesh has already deposited ₹67 lakh in lieu of market price of land in the court, but the logjam continues over the payment. While the Endowment Department claims that the land is in its possession, the farmers are claiming ownership of land.

The delay in acquisition of land at Savalyapuram village in Vinukonda mandal and Rajupalem village in Sattenapalli mandal has been holding up the project connecting Piduguralla to Savalyapuram stations.

“The delay in awarding compensation to land owners is delaying the execution of the project. Works worth ₹450 crore are waiting to be completed, and we are racing against time to complete the project,” said a senior railway official.

The Railways has asked for 5,189 acres of land in Guntur, Prakasam and Nellore districts.

The Nadikudi-Srikalahasti railway project, sanctioned in 2011-2012 at an estimated cost of ₹2.289 crore, is a game changer as it serves as an alternative route to the heavily congested Howrah-Chennai railway line. It also serves as a vital link between Guntur and Tirupati and boost the transportation of freight from the industrial belt in Guntur to Rayalaseema region and beyond. The project connects Secunderabad-Guntur line at Nadikudi in Guntur district and Gudur-Renigunta main line at Srikalahasti in Chitoor district covering a distance of 309 km.

The new railway line will also connect hinterlands and the backward interior areas of Guntur, Prakasam and Nellore districts, besides providing connectivity to Capital Amaravati.

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Printable version | Sep 21, 2021 7:39:43 PM |

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