Union minister Goyal says K-Rail not good for environment, asks Left govt to have relook

Piyush Goyal. Photo: PTI/File

Kochi: Union Commerce Minister Piyush Goyal on Tuesday said the proposed ambitious K-Rail project of the Left government is not good for the environment of Kerala and urged the state government to have a relook at the initiative.

Goyal, who met the media here, said the Union government has so far given no permission for the semi-high speed SilverLine project.

"So far, no permission has been given at all and we believe that it will be very bad for the environment and therefore they (Kerala government) should relook at it, hear the concerns of the people of Kerala and act according to the wishes of the people of Kerala," Goyal told the media.

Addressing a press meet here at the BJP office, Goyal criticised the Left government and said people are migrating to gulf countries due to lack of industrial development in the state.

"Why do you have to go to the gulf to earn a living. Why there's no infrastructure development? I remember as railway minister talking to the Kerala government. But they never acquire land and give to us for essential projects. Now they have come up with some fancy SilverLine project for which I don't think they will ever be able to get the land, having seen their track record," the BJP leader said.

Goyal also charged the Left government with not only indulging in populism and slogans but also damaging the environment with their actions.

The ambitious K-Rail project, also known as the SilverLine project, is expected to reduce journey time from Thiruvananthapuram to Kasaragod from 12 hours to just 4 hours.

The Left government had on January 15 published the Detailed Project Report (DPR) of the project with an estimated cost of Rs 63,941 crore.

The 529.45 km long project is executed by Kerala Rail Development Corporation Limited (K-Rail), a joint venture of Government of Kerala and Ministry of Railways, for implementing the railway infrastructure in the state. PTI

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