Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan here on Tuesday claimed through a Facebook post that the Centre had given in-principle approval to the Rs 66,000 crore Thiruvananthapuram-Kasaragod semi-high speed rail (SHSR) corridor project.
The order was issued by the Ministry of Railways and conveyed to Kerala Chief Secretary Tom Jose, Pinarayi wrote.
It's joint venture of the Kerala government and the Ministry of Railways. SHSR, named Silver Line, is envisaged to cut travel time between Thiruvananthapuram and Kasaragod from 12 hours to 4 hours.
Kerala Rail Development Corporation (KRDCL), implementing agency for the 540-km double-line project, had submitted the proposal to the Ministry of Railways for building third and fourth lines between Thiruvananthapuram and Kasaragod.
V. Ajith Kumar, Managing Director, KRDCL, said the approval was a milestone in the project implementation. It's expected to fast-track the economy of Kerala.
"The state cabinet approved the project after a year-long feasibility study, conducted by KRDCL," said. Kumar.
Pinarayi during his recent visit to Japan, had held discussions in this regard with Japanese experts.
During implementation, the project is expected to create 50,000 jobs and employment for 11,000 on completion. Seen as a game-changer in Kerala's infrastructure and economic development, SHSR is to be implemented with minimum land acquisition.
Trains on the track, which passes through 11 of the 14 districts, will run at 200 km per hour.