TENKASI: Activists have demanded the State government to complete Tirunelveli - Tenkasi road widening project, which has been pending for the last seven years, as soon as possible.
In reply to an RTI application filed by an MDMK functionary, State Highway Department said that it was still in the process of finalising a contractor to complete the Rs 480.60-crore project that will convert the the existing 45.6-km two-lane stretch to four-lane.
"In haste, the highway department axed 1160 fully-grown trees including tamarind, neem, Vaagai and century-old banyan trees on the side of the existing Tirunelveli - Tenkasi two-way road in 2018 with. The contract given to the earlier contractor, Seyyadurai, was cancelled later following an Income Tax Department search on his The State government did not show any interest to complete this project in the last two years," claimed A Thiravidamani, an Alangulam based activist.
The MDMK functionary, Udayasooriyan, said that after the contract given to Seyyadurai was cancelled, the highway department conducted a re-tender in November 2019. "Even 10 months after the re-tender was conducted, the department has not started the project. When they could cut down more than 1,000 trees in a couple of days, why could not they complete the project in a few months?. I request the State government to replant the trees that were axed and relay the existing two-lane road between Tirunelveli and Tenkasi if they are not interested in completing the project," he said.
Replying to Udayasooriyan's RTI query, the State government said that two road bridges, with a length of 900 metre, would be constructed in Pavoorchatram and Alangulam and Pavoorchatram towns would have service roads when the project is implemented.