International Airport: Interim Report on Social Impact Study Submitted

The land acquisition process for the development and expansion of Thiruvananthapuram International Airport have picked up pace, as Loyola College of Social Sciences, entrusted with the social impact study submitted the interim report at the collectorate.

The airport was allotted 18.53 acres at Pettah and Muttathara by the government in 2014, but land acquisition was delayed due to the protest from the local residents. Social impact study was proposed by the government, considering the request of the local residents to have a fair deal in land acquisition. The study began in the last week of May.

The team from the college conducting the study visited the site and met the residents and action council representatives.

“The residents responded positively and even showed us the area to be acquired for airport development. When we first met them, people were apprehensive about the rehabilitation package. They were told about the benefits of the study. We will meet all residents, whose land will be acquired for airport development, including those who do not live here to include their demands in the study. The study is expected to be complete in three months,” said Fr Sabu P Thomas, vice-principal of Loyola College of Social Sciences who is leading the social impact study from the institute.

For further study, the team had requested the Airport Authority to submit the airport development plan and will also convene a meeting with AAI officials next week.  Also, the revenue officials will conduct the survey and alignment work in the area for an accurate study on land in the coming week. Previous attempts of the government officials to survey the land were obstructed by the residents, who conducted protests. As many as 27 people, who own land in the area allotted for airport development, have submitted consent to surrender their land which totals to nearly six acres.

“The rehabilitation and resettlement packages to be offered to the land owners and settlers will be based on the study, after it is approved by the expert committee of the government. Those who lose their property will receive apt compensation as per the Land Acquisition Act,” said an official from collectorate.

Source: “Times of India”

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