SilverLine will be completed in five years: K-Rail

Apparently stung by the criticism of the SilverLine project by noted engineer E. Sreedharan, the Kerala Rail Development Corporation on Wednesday issued a pressnote seeking to counter the points raised by the former Railway Board member.

The pressnote quoting K-Rail Managing Director V.A jith Kumar said the SilverLine project was planned on a fast-track basis to be completed in five years at a total cost of ₹63,941 crore.

Mr. Kumar said if land could be acquired in two years, SilverLine would be completed in another three years. He, however, admitted that more years of acquiring land would lead to cost escalation and non-viability of the project.

On Tuesday, Mr. Sreedharan had rubbished K-Rail’s claim to complete the project in five years, saying that even the best executing agency in the country such as DMRC would take eight to 10 years for execution.

DPR awaiting nod

Mr. Kumar said the detailed project report (DPR) was awaiting the final approval of the Railway Board. “The Ministry of Railways has cleared the proposal for foreign funding and NITI Aayog has recommended to the Finance Ministry to go ahead with the process,” he said. A comprehensive EIA study was in progress.

The DPR, he said, was a commercial document and hence could not be released in the public domain. He explained that the SilverLine would run parallel to the existing road from Kasargod to Tirur. A parallel route from Tirur to Thiruvananthapuram was not possible as there were many curves and hence a new route was planned for this stretch.

No cause for worry

The pressnote said the embankment for SilverLine would not cause flooding and that protective fencing would be erected around the tracks where the train travels at a speed of more than 140 kmph.

Defending the decision to base the SilverLine on the standard gauge, Mr. Kumar said the current broad-gauge system in India did not allow a train to run above 160 kmph. The pressnote added that the RORO facility of SilverLine would be operated in non-peak hours and during the nights only after track maintaining works.

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Printable version | Jan 27, 2022 8:34:38 AM |

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