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Govt. push for Light Metro

Thiruvananthapuram: Giving a definitive push to the much-awaited Light Metro projects for the State capital and Kozhikode, the government has decided to speed up land acquisition and asked Delhi Metro Rail Corporation Ltd (DMRC) to finalise the rolling stock even as the State awaits the Central nod for the ₹6,728-crore twin project.
A high-level meeting here on Wednesday, chaired by Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan and attended by DMRC principal adviser E. Sreedharan, decided to set up a committee to select the rolling stock using either linear induction motor or rotary motor. A six-member team led by Mr. Sreedharan that had visited Kuala Lumpur and Taipei last year to study the rolling stock used in the urban rail system there proposed an 18-metre-long and 2.5-metre-wide rolling stock, with aluminium or stainless steel body. The decision comes in the wake of the DMRC’s request that tenders be floated to know the interest of rolling-stock suppliers.
With the meeting giving its nod, land acquisition for the construction of four flyovers in the Technocity-Karamana corridor in Thiruvananthapuram and widening of Mananchira-Meenchantha stretch in Kozhikode through which the mass rapid transit system (MRTS) is to move would be speeded up. The government made it clear that the DMRC will have to wait for the mandatory nod from the Union Ministry of Urban Development to take up other works connected with the ambitious MRTS when Mr. Sreedharan informed the Chief Minister about the decision of other States to go ahead with preparatory works of their MRTS projects without waiting for Central clearance, to avoid cost overruns and delays.
Orders this week
Public Works Minister G. Sudhakaran said orders for widening the 3.5-km stretch from Mananchira to Meenchantha will be issued by the PWD this week. This will help the DMRC reopen its office in Kozhikode and commence the preparatory work in the Light Metro corridor.
Nod for flyovers
The meeting was informed that approval had been given to begin the ₹272.84-crore preparatory work for four flyovers in the Technocity-Karamana Light Metro corridor in the capital and that land acquisition proceedings will commence soon. The DMRC was also asked to look into the feasibility of extending the Light Metro to Pappanamcode on NH 66 and the flyover at Ulloor to the Medical College junction.
Additional Chief Secretary (Finance) K.M. Abraham, Additional Chief Secretary (Revenue) P.H. Kurian, Additional Chief Secretary and Secretary to the Chief Minister V.S. Senthil, Public Works Special Secretary Biju Prabhakar, and Kerala Rapid Transit Corporation Limited (KRTL) managing director Ajith  Patil were present.

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