Kerala

Minister stages hunger strike

Public Works Minister G. Sudhakaran staging a hunger strike in Alappuzha on Thursday.

Public Works Minister G. Sudhakaran staging a hunger strike in Alappuzha on Thursday.  

Protest against Railways’ delay in giving permission to place girders above track

The lackadaisical attitude of Railways is resulting in an inordinate delay in the completion of the Alappuzha bypass project, Public Works Minister G. Sudhakaran has said.

Mr. Sudhakaran staged a hunger strike in protest against the delay on the part of Railways in giving permission to place girders above the railway track as part of the construction of two railway overbridges here on Thursday.

“Railways authorities have found some issues in girders. However, they have not yet specified the fault with the girders. Once the work is started, we will be able to complete it and open the bypass road in two months,” the Minister said.

Letter to Minister

Mr. Sudhakaran said that he had written to the Union Railways Minister raising the issue. He said that the Congress party was trying to play politics regarding the bypass project.

The project was first mooted four decades ago to ensure smooth movement of traffic between the State capital and the State’s commercial hub and beyond. However, it had remained on paper until the work got underway on April 10, 2015.

The project, which was set to be completed in September 2017, got delayed on account of various reasons.

Pending projects

The deadline was initially extended to May 28, 2018 and further to August 31, 2018. Although the majority of the project has been completed, construction of two ROBs at Malikamukku and Kuthirapanthy is still pending.

Officials said that the work had come to a halt for more than six months ago after a delay in getting permission from Railways to place girders above the railway track. Sources said that after inspecting the girders brought for the construction of the ROBs, the Railways recommended structural changes and denied permission for starting the work. The 6.8- km two-lane bypass road will link Kommady on the north and Kalarcode on the south and pass by the western side of the National Highway 66.

The road will have two major junctions at Kommady and Kalarcode. One of the major features of the bypass is a 3.2-km stretch of elevated highway that pass by the Alappuzha beach.

Once completed, the bypass is expected to bring relief to the Alappuzha town from the traffic bottlenecks.

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Printable version | May 25, 2020 2:05:14 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/kerala/minister-stages-hunger-strike/article29650093.ece

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