K-Rail stone | Photo: Mathrubhumi News / Screengrab
Thrissur: The Kerala Sasthra Sahithya Parishad (KSSP) on Sunday released a study report on the state government's SilverLine semi-high speed rail project and called for a rethink of its implementation. According to the report findings, the detailed project report (DPR) is incomplete and lacks enough details required for a project as big as K-Rail. The report was released at the KSSP state conference, the other day.
With the implementation of the project, a total of 1500 hectares of flora-rich land, including 12.58 hectares of natural vegetation, 54.91 hectares of mangroves, 208.84 hectares of paddy fields, 18.40 hectares of wetlands, 1172.39 hectares of ponds and 24.59 hectares of ‘kavu’ (sacred groves), will be lost within a 100 metre zone on either side of the line.
Furthermore, the natural essence of 3,532 hectares of wetlands and 1,131 hectares of paddy fields will be lost. These areas are inhabited by around 42 aquatic animals that are enlisted in the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) red list. Also, almost 202.96 kilometres of the line passes through flood-hit zones.
Out of the total 535 kilometres, 292.73 kilometres of land with a height of two to eight metres have been proposed as embankment areas. That is, almost 55 per cent accounts for embankments. However, the DPR does not mention any advanced engineering techniques required to tackle the possibility of floods in the embankment areas.
As many as 7500 houses, 33 flats, 454 industrial institutions and 173 private-public institutions will be completely destroyed with the implementation of the project. In short, 6,54,675 square metres of residential areas will be lost. But, the DPR does not detail on the handling of the debris of demolished buildings.