THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The civil work of the second phase of the Kerala State Transport Project’s (KSTP) - Safe Corridor Project is expected to be completed as per the deadline. Even though the eviction of the 45 encroachers identified by the authorities in the 60 cents porampoku land in one of the busiest junction of Venjaramoodu is still pending, the KSTP officers have claimed the work will be completed by the end of April.
The Venjaramoodu encroachers delay in eviction was taken up to the State Human Rights Commission (SHRC). According to the recent judgement declared by the SHRC on the eviction of these encroachers, the commission has directed the National Transportation Planning and Research Centre (NATPAC) authorities to initiate steps to evacuate them as soon as the design of the land has been completed.
Human Rights Protection Forum convenor Thempammood Sahadevan said the NATPAC has not yet submitted the design causing the delay in the project. Based on which the convenor has written to them seeking an explanation on the delay. However, the NATPAC official claims the completed designs have already been submitted to KSTP.
“We have already submitted the design work to the KSTP and they are responsible for further processes like evacuation and other construction works. The NATPAC is responsible for designing the road safety elements which includes signages, road markings, studs, and rumble strips to warn the motorists and crash barriers at vulnerable locations. We are also assigned to implement the intersection improvement measures, school zone and gateway treatment plan. The implementation process will be completed by the declared deadline,” said NATPAC director Shaheem S.
Under the engineering sector of the project, in the 80 km stretch of MC road as many as 30 junctions have been selected for redesigning and the work has been assigned to NATPAC. Of these the work of eight junctions design which has been completed while the rest are in progress. Other actions like surface treatment and road marking have reached up to Venjaramoodu from Adoor.
“Almost all other encroached areas falling under the project region has been cleared and only Venjaramoodu junction is left out. The maximum area in this region has been encroached by a mosque which got a stay order from the High Court against the evacuation. We have filed a counter-petition against this and are expecting a favourable judgment by the end of March. After which we will be able to begin the work here by evacuating all 45 encroachers together,” said a KSTP top officer.
The World Bank had sanctioned Rs 168 crore to implement the second phase of the Safe Corridor Project in the 80-km area. The Safe-corridor Road Safety project is aimed at zero accidents on the accident-prone corridor through enhanced road safety measures.