Nitin Gadkari assures Kerala full cooperation to expedite highway projects
New Delhi: Union Minister Nitin Gadkari Saturday assured Kerala of all cooperation in expediting highway projects.
Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan had called on the Road Transport, Highways and Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME) Minister to discuss infrastructure and ongoing highways projects in the state. Pinarayi Vijayan also gave a positive response regarding the meeting.
"The Chief Minister discussed the ongoing highway and infrastructure projects in the states. We have assured full cooperation to them," Gadkari said after the meetings.
The union minister said he had asked Kerala to expedite land acquisition. Price of land is more in Kerala and the union government was providing Kerala three times the amount being provided to other states. He also added that highway development was a first priority.
Earlier, Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, and V Muraleedharan, MSEA called on Gadkari Saturday to discuss the progress of on-going road and infrastructure projects in the state. Kerala PWD Minister G Sudhakaran was also accompanying Pinarayi Vijayan.
Meanwhile, V Muraleedharan said that the problem of Kerala not featuring in the priority list for National Highway development has been solved. “The union government has decided to abandon the priority list system,” he added.
“Matters regarding road development and land acquisition was discussed in detail. Discussions were held on reaching a consensus between the central and state governments and the National Highway Authority considering the ever increasing coast of building roads and acquiring land for building roads in Kerala,” Muraleedharan said.
Before his meeting with Nitin Gadkari, Pinarayi Vijayan had met Prime Minister Narandra Modi. The CM requested the PM not to hand over the operations of Thiruvananthapuram international airport to the Adani group which won the bid for the same. The CM also sought assistance for rebuilding the state following the devastating floods of 2018.