No Metro rail launch on May 30; will wait for PM

Thiruvananthapuram: The inaugural ceremony of Kochi Metro rail service will not be held on May 30 as announced by Minister Kadakampally Surendran earlier.
Terming that Kadakampally made the announcement following a mix-up, the Chief Ministers office said the date has not been finalised yet.
"The state government is attempting to launch the service at a date convenient to the Prime Minister. Though the PM was extended an invitation on April 11, no reply has been received so far," the CMs office said.
Earlier in the day, Kadakampally had said that the inaugural would be held on May 30 and the government cannot wait for the PM. This soon had snowballed into a controversy.
Accordingly, the CMs office has come up with an explanation correcting Kadakampally.
Later, Kadakampally too said that he was not adamant on the inaugural date.
Given the PMs visit to three European countries from May 29 to June 4, nobody anticipated the launch of Kochi Metro until his return. Unexpectedly, Kadakampally announced the launch on May 30.
Sources said the PMs office had informed the state government of his availability on June 5 and 6.
Also, the reports emerge that the Union Urban Development Ministry and KMRL were too not informed about the inaugural.
BJP state president Kummanam Rajasekharan had earlier said that the government was well aware that the prime minister would be away from the country from May 29 to June 3.
Commenting upon the alleged move to get the Kochi metro inaugurated on May 30, he said there was a 'deliberate' attempt to ensure that Modi does not get to attend thefunction.
There is a 'political conspiracy' behind the move, he said.
The CPI (M)-led LDF government should have decided on a date for the inaugural function after taking into account the prime ministers convenience, the BJP leader said here.
The LDF government has drawn up a series of programmes to mark its first year in office, including getting the prestigious Rs 5,181 crore Kochi Metro project inaugurated byModi.
Earlier, talking to reporters Devaswom and Tourism Minister Kadakkampally Surendran said: We are expecting prime minister Narendra Modis confirmation in a day or two and thefiles are in the PMOs office.
The first phase of Kochi Metro comprises a 13.4 km section from Aluva to Palarivattom. Its inauguration has been tentatively fixed for May 30, the minister said.
(with inputs from PTI)

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