With the lack of funds for land acquisition delaying some key projects allotted under the Jawaharlal Nehru Urban Renewal Mission (JNNURM), the Kochi Corporation will approach the State Government with a request to allot funds for the purpose.
Kochi Mayor Tony Chammany said the Corporation will pressurise the State Government to take a speedy decision in this regard. As many as 11 key projects under JNNURM and Kerala Sustainable Urban Development Project (KSUDP) are suffering owing to problems related to land acquisition.
Though the civic body has initiated steps for acquiring land at a a premium price (‘ponnumvila’), the `84 crore allotted by the state was inadequate for the purpose.
“A total of `705 crore is needed to acquire land for various projects related to sewerage, water logging and infrastructure. In addition to this, the delay in implementing the project has resulted in tender excess. The tender excess amount comes to around `125 crore. So, the Corporation will have to find a source for nearly `830 crore,” said a top Corporation official.
Though the Roads and Bridges Development Corporation of Kerala (RBDCK) has been entrusted with construction of the Railway Over bridges (RoBs) at Pachalam and Atlantis, the work is yet to begin owing to the non-acquisition of land.
The Pachalam RoB was actually proposed at an estimated cost of `45.45 crore, while the project cost of the Atlantis RoB was `10.63 crore. The minimum cost for acquiring land for both the projects is `136 crore, which is three times higher than the actual project cost.
Enunciating the steps undertaken to expedite the projects, Mayor Tony Chammany had recently convened a meeting with the authorities concerned. Following the meeting, it was decided to urge the State Government to allot sufficient funds for the land acquisition.