The Times of India dated 10.05.2014 reports
With the election commission relaxing the code of conduct the other day, the Karamana-Kaliyikkavila road widening project has finally got back on its feet. The code of conduct had held up tender process for the project for nearly two months.
The NH wing of the public works department (PWD) has opened tender for the project. However, only two companies have participated in the bid.
The National Highway wing of the PWD has decided to begin the pre-qualification process by next week. Once the companies clear pre-qualification criteria, they will have to take part in the financial bid. “The entire process is expected to take at least one month to complete,” said Prabhakaran K P, chief engineer, NH.
Though land acquisition is yet to be completed on the phase-I stretch from Karamana to Vazhimukku, NH officials hope to be able to begin works once the tender is awarded to the lowest bidder. “As per rule, we could begin works once 60% of the land is acquired for work. So we see no major hurdle,” he said.
The project is to widen the stretch from Karamana to Kaliyikkavila in 30.2 metres. The stretch will have a four-lane carriageway of 7.5m each, 3-metre paved shoulders, 1.5-metre footpath, 1.6-m utility corridors on either side and a 3-metre median.
The total cost for the project is estimated to be around Rs 640 crore. The state government has so far given sanction for over Rs 200 crore for land acquisition works and Rs 66 crore for road widening works.
Land acquisition for road widening works on the stretch has hardly been smooth, with many people still dissatisfied with the compensation. Karamana-Kaliyikkavila NH widening action council members met district collector Biju Prabhakar on Thursday to discuss the issue.
“The collector has convened a meeting of officials concerned. He said a solution will be arrived at soon,” said action council general secretary Mannankal Ramachandran. Meanwhile, the government is yet to take a decision on giving tax exemption to landowners who won a favourable verdict from the high court.