Kerala is the only state which has agreed to pay 25% of the cost of land acquisition for National Highway development in the state, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan has said. An amount of Rs 452 crore has already been handed over and the road development projects are going to be a milestone in the state's development of the basic infrastructure, he said, while speaking after the online inauguration of NH Bypass on NH 66 (Kazhakoottam-Mukola road) in Thiruvananthapuram by Union Minister for Road Transport, Highways and MSMEs, Nitin Gadkari. Gadkari also laid the foundation stone for seven other National Highway projects in Kerala, an official release said.
As a part of the Mumbai-Kanyakumari Economic Corridor, 23 projects with a length of 650 km are being developed in Kerala at an investment of Rs 50,000 crore, Gadkari said. The corridor will greatly enable the economic prosperity of the region.The corridor traversing the entire length of Kerala from North to South is expected to be the "lifeline of Kerala."
The problems relating to land acquisition could be resolved due to the good cooperation of Chief Minister, Gadkari said. "The cost of land acquisition is the highest in Kerala. The bulk of the project cost is required for this. Road development in Kerala will be given due consideration.The performance of this state government in the development of national highways was better than that of the previous government and it was very helpful," he added.
The NH development in Kerala is being done in 17 packages. The CM also requested the Union Minister to approve the remaining nine packages in this financial year itself and acknowledged his full support to the development of the National Highways.
With the completion of 27 km of the Kazhakuttam- Mukkola bypass, the first phase of the 43 km Kazhakuttam- Karode road connecting the Tamil Nadu border has become a reality. The inauguration, on Tuesday, marks the construction of six stretches of NH 66 at a cost of Rs 11,571 crore, including Thalappady-Chengala (Rs 1,981 crore, 39 km), Chengala-Neeleswaram (Rs 1,746 crore, 37 km) in Kasaragod district, and Parole-Taliparambu (Rs 3,042 crore, 40 km) in Kasaragod and Kannur districts.