Kerala Kaumudi Online
Monday, 06 December 2021 10.38 PM IST

Let high-speed rail happen quickly!


People, especially the youth, are of the opinion that development and efficiency are the hallmarks of governance. The secret behind Prime Minister Modi's creation of Sub Ka Vikas is nothing else. Gone are the days when people would support parties by evaluating only the accusations made against each other politically. Why should the people continue to trust the rulers who do not even provide the necessary travel facilities to the people? The Thiruvananthapuram-Kasargod semi-high speed project is a project that will change the face of Kerala. The Central Government has stated in the National Green Tribunal that it does not require prior environmental clearance. This has paved the way for the rapid implementation of the project.

The affidavit of the Centre states that the 2006 Central Notification on Environmental Impact Assessment does not include railway projects and therefore does not require prior approval.

Many centres are trying to block this project. As part of that, several moves may take place. Only one of that kind is seen in the petition before the Green Tribunal asking that the construction not be allowed before the environmental permit is obtained. Some centres have approached the courts with public interest litigation to block various development projects. It should be added that in another case, the Supreme Court had yesterday ruled that court time should not be wasted on unnecessary and fraudulent public interest litigation. One argument raised by some against this plan is that it will not benefit Kerala in the future. We cannot predict what will happen in the future, especially in the case of development related to transportation. Some have argued that this will not be feasible even at the start of the Delhi Metro project and will cause huge losses. Opponents of the plan also use the metro facility for travel today.

If the project starts now, 50,000 people will get jobs during the construction phase. A recent study also found that youth unemployment is on the rise in Kerala. When the project is completed, the number of people who will get permanent jobs will be more than ten thousand.

Kerala is a small state. If it is possible to reach from one end to the other in four hours, the change it will bring will be huge in terms of development. Road traffic can also be relatively reduced. These are no small things because it can save Rs 530 crore on petrol and diesel every year. The number of goods vehicles causing accidents on the road will also be significantly reduced.

Some creatures will howl as merchants ride their camels through the desert. They do not pay attention to it. The business community will continue to move forward. So go ahead, Pinarayi government and complete the project quickly. Those who make a fuss along the way will return to their den after getting tired when they see that nothing will happen. Because the general public, especially the younger generation, is listening to the whistle of development and they care least for political blabbering.

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