Thiruvananthapuram: In a boost to Kerala’s efforts to fast-track infrastructure development, the Centre on Saturday gave the green signal to the high-speed rail corridor project, linking the entire stretch from Kasargode in the north to the state capital in the south.
The 580 km track which will reduce end-to-end running time to two to three hours, is expected to cost Rs 1 lakh crore.
At a high-level meeting convened at the Prime Minister’s Office in Delhi last evening, the State was asked to draw up a Detailed Project Report (DPR) of the scheme, official sources here said.
Mr Pulok Chatterjee, Principal Secretary to the Prime Minister, the Kerala Chief Secretary, Mr P Prabhakaran, and the Managing Director of Infrastructure Kerala Ltd, Mr T Balakrishnan, were involved in the discussions.
The meeting was convened in response to the Chief Minister, Mr Oommen Chandy’s, plea to the Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh, seeking the Centre’s support for the mega project.
The 580-km track which will reduce end-to-end running time to two to three hours, is expected to cost Rs 1 lakh crore.
Though the finance pattern of the project is yet to be finalised, it is likely to be a private-public partnership’ venture with technical and financial collaboration of the Indian Railways, Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) and central and state governments, sources said.
The green signal to the high speed rail project has come close on the heels of the Kochi Metro Rail, the basic works for which has already begun.
On coming to power in May 2011, the UDF Government headed by Mr Chandy unveiled an ambitious development agenda with its focus on infrastructure development.
With additional information from PTI