Kerala ready to share proposed railway line's cost

Thiruvananthapuram, Jan 2 : Kerala has agreed to chip in with funds for the construction of the 72-km first-phase rail link between Sultan Bathery (Wayanad district) and Nanjangud (in Mysore), said Chief Minister Oommen Chandy.

Chandy, in a letter to Railway Minister Mallikarjun Kharge, has expressed the state's willingness to share the project's cost. He has also asked the railway minister to ensure that the first phase, estimated to cost Rs.641.78 crore, begins at the earliest.

The first phase of the proposed project is part of the 236-km railway line between Nilambur (Malappuram district) and Nanjangud, at an overall cost of Rs.4,266 crore.

At a meeting in August last year, the railway minister had said that the project would be more viable if the Karnataka and Kerala governments can together bear 50 percent of the cost of the project's first phase.

Chandy's decision comes at a time when a survey for the proposed rail line has recently been completed. The line is expected to cater to over 20 million people residing in Kerala, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu.

The line would pass through the districts of Wayanad, Kannur, Kozhikode and Malappuram (all in Kerala), the Nilgiris (in Tamil Nadu), and Mysore, Chamrajanagar and Coorg (in Karnataka).

--IANS (Posted on 02-01-2014)

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