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Balaramapuram-Vazhimukku Road widening to be delayed Thiruvananthapuram, ET Infra


THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The acquisition of land for the widening of the 1.5-km-long stretch at Balaramapuram on the Karamana-Kaliyikkavila inter-state highway from Kodinada to Vazhimukku will be delayed due to the acute financial crisis faced by the state government.

Though 47 landowners from Vazhimukku towards Balaramapuram have received compensation, the revenue authorities have not been able to make the payment to many others due to the prevailing financial crisis.

Sources close to the revenue wing of the district administration said that the government had dispensed Rs 40 crore approximately so far.

The total cost of land acquisition is estimated to be Rs 97 crore.

The development of the small stretch has already been delayed for several months due to various reasons. In reply to an RTI query filed by social activist M Salim, the special tahsildar said that the authorities are not in a position to fix a time frame for completing the land acquisition proceedings.

Earlier, the revenue wing of the district administration stated that the compensation disbursal would be completed by Feb-end and that the construction work is likely to start in April.

However, at this pace, the development of the stretch will be delayed further, and the traffic woes are set to worsen. Though the state govt had earlier proposed an underpass at Balaramapuram Junction, it was later dropped owing to stiff opposition from traders. Now, the road will be upgraded to four lanes with 30.2m width.

“The authorities are deliberately delaying the project. Now, all the hurdles related to the project are over.

The compensation dispensation is going slowly, and many landowners are yet to receive the cash. When I filed an RTI, I got a reply from the government that they have not fixed a time frame for completing the land acquisition procedures. Hence it is confirmed that the project will be delayed further,” said Salim.

The revenue department needs to acquire land from 250 more owners.

Meanwhile, sources close to the land acquisition division of the district administration said that the land acquisition can be completed only after getting the full amount from the Kerala Infrastructure Investment Fund Board.

The Kerala Road Fund Board is the executing agency for the project. KIIFB has allotted only Rs 40 crore so far, which has been disbursed to the landowners. The agency needs to release the remaining amount.

“We are waiting for it to get it passed from the state treasury. Similarly, we need to complete the financial evaluation of some buildings owing to disputes over finalizing land and building values. However, we are collecting the documents from the landowners,” an official said.

  • Published On Feb 22, 2024 at 02:12 PM IST

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