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Kerala Kaumudi Online
Tuesday, 22 September 2020 8.01 AM IST

US firm's appointment as consultant for proposed Sabarimala airport in violation of norms: Chennithala

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THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Levelling another allegation against the Left government, senior Congress leader Ramesh Chennithala on Tuesday alleged that the appointment of a US-headquartered firm as the consultant for the proposed Sabarimala greenfield airport, was in violation of norms. "The Chief Ministers Office (CMO) is using the fig leaf of consultancy to indulge in corruption," he told reporters.

The Opposition has been attacking the government over various issues including the gold smuggling case involving diplomatic baggage recently.

"Louis Berger was appointed as consultant in 2017, even before the government finalised the site for the airport.

Wasnt such an act a blatant disregard of norms? A consultancy raj exists in the state and the government was recklessly appointing consultancies even in minor projects," Chennithala said at a press meet here.

The Opposition leader also alleged that though the US-headquartered global professional services firm was appointed in November 2017, its contribution in three years was a 38-page report. He claimed that while the government is now proposing Cheruvally Estate in Erumely as the site of the airport, representatives of the firm couldn't enter the land.

"The land which rightly belongs to the state government is in the custody of another group now who prevented their entry.

Though the government has doubts about its rights on the land, the Congress-led UDF is firm that the land belongs to the government," Chennithala said.

The Opposition had earlier raised an allegation against the state government that the collection of data by a US company violated the fundamental rights of COVID-19 patients and moved the Kerala High Court seeking quashing of its contract with the firm.

The court had then permitted the state government to utilise the services of the firm Sprinklr, for processing data, subject to stringent conditions.

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TAGS: RAMESH CHENNITHALA, SABARIMALA AIRPORT, CONSULTANCY, KERALA GOVT
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