Kerala

BJP, Cong. retard Kerala's progress: CM

Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Tuesday said an unholy nexus between the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), Congress, Indian Union Muslim League (IUML) and the Jamaat-e-Islami-backed Welfare Party of India (WPI) were working overtime to scuttle the development aspirations of Kerala.

Inaugurating a Left Democratic Front-sponsored Raj Bhavan march in protest against Centre's indifference to the developmental needs of Kerala, Mr. Vijayan said a BJP-led coterie in New Delhi had attempted to throw a spanner in the works of the State's ardent bid to develop basic infrastructure.

He said the other powers worked in tandem with the BJP by discrediting key projects such as SilverLine as "quixotic, anti-environment and economically unviable". The Centre and State had agreed in principle to build a semi-high-speed railway line that would drastically reduce the travel time between Thiruvananthapuram and Kasaragod to less than four hours.

K-Rail

The administrations had created a company, K-Rail, with Railways holding 49% of the greenfield project shares. Recently, Railways changed tack and said it was unwilling to give a financial guarantee for the project. Politics had prompted the change of tone and Kerala was not dispirited. The State Government would provide a complete financial warranty. Discussions were on with the Railway Minister. If required, the Kerala Government would petition Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Mr. Vijayan said the Centre seemed to succumb to the pressure exerted by the nexus. It had back-peddled on the Sabarimala airport, Thiruvananthapuram-Chengannur suburban highway and other critical infrastructure projects such as expanding the Kozhikode and Kannur airports. Kerala sensed desperation to retard its momentum to build a modern State. Despite its sterling public health record, Kerala still had no All India Institute of Medical Sciences.

The BJP had used Central agencies to target the Kerala Infrastructure Investment Fund Board. It had used Central law enforcement to prosecute a malicious recriminatory campaign against the previous LDF government. However, the people voted the LDF back to power. The Congress, IUML and WPI had played second fiddle to the BJP's agenda, and they still do. However, the people of Kerala would defeat the machinations of the vested interests, he said.

LDF and CPI(M) leaders spoke at the rally.


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Printable version | Jan 17, 2022 12:53:50 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/kerala/bjp-cong-retard-keralas-progress-cm/article37776865.ece

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