Report Wire - Kerala’s bold SilverLine rail challenge “an idiotic decision”, says metroman E Sreedharan

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Kerala’s bold SilverLine rail challenge “an idiotic decision”, says metroman E Sreedharan

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Kerala's ambitious SilverLine rail project "an idiotic decision", says metroman E Sreedharan

Express News Service

KOCHI: Metro man E Sreedharan has mentioned the much-touted Thiruvananthapuram-Kasaragod semi high-speed rail hall (SilverLine) challenge is a good folly.

“The alignment chosen is flawed. From Tirur to Kasaragod, it runs parallel to the existing railway line. The Railways has opposed this alignment as it would interfere with the future quadrupling of this stretch. Besides, 140km of the line passes through paddy fields, which are not stable for high-speed travel,” he mentioned, including that prime partitions must be constructed on both facet of the tracks to forestall trespassing, blocking free passage and drainage.”This will be equivalent to the China wall and will divide Kerala from north to south. This is an idiotic decision. SilverLine should be away from the existing line, either elevated or underground. Nowhere in the world high-speed or semi high-speed lines are planned at the ground level,” he mentioned, in an in depth write-up shared with TNIE.

The feedback by Sreedharan, who’s credited with the profitable development of Konkan Railway, the Delhi Metro and Kochi Metro Rail, adopted Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan’s public accusation that the Opposition UDF and BJP are blocking developmental works within the state with explicit reference to the SilverLine challenge. CPM politburo member Kodiyeri Balakrishnan had additionally echoed the identical.

The Okay-Rail challenge envisages a 529.45-kilometre-long semi high-speed railway line passing by means of 11 districts. As per the plan, when the challenge is realised, one can journey from Kasaragod to Thiruvananthapuram in lower than 4 hours on trains travelling at 200 km/hr. The present journey time on the present Indian Railways community is 12 hours.

Sreedharan, who contested as a BJP candidate from Palakkad meeting constituency, justified the social gathering’s opposition to the Okay-Rail challenge, stating that the federal government can’t be allowed to take individuals for a experience with false guarantees, mistaken value estimates, unrealistic completion dates and flawed technical parameters. “Kerala is in a financial crisis. How will it fund the Rs 1.1 lakh-crore project? It is not viable,” he requested.”Yes, the BJP is against the SilverLine project for the reason that the project as conceived now is totally against the state’s interests for several reasons,” Sreedharan mentioned.

On the technical parameters, he mentioned SilverLine has not been permitted by the Railways, notably the gauge. The Railways desires this line to perform as a 3rd and fourth line, to enrich the current line capability. This just isn’t attainable with an ordinary gauge.

To enhance income, RO-RO companies on the SilverLine are deliberate for the evenings. “It’s not practical, as night hours are needed for maintenance. Moreover, no final location survey has been conducted on the ground. Finalising railway alignment based on Google Maps or Lidar survey is not acceptable, particularly when land acquisition is being pursued with undue haste. When the actual final location survey is done, there will be a lot of changes, and half the land acquisition will be wasted,” he defined.

“No traffic survey, no geotechnical survey, no environmental study and no social impact study have been conducted. The DPR prepared is mostly based on assumptions and hypotheses. Naturally, the cost estimates, traffic projections and economics of the line are not reliable. The contents of the DPR are kept secret,” mentioned Sreedharan.

He additionally identified that the associated fee estimate has been suppressed on the idea that the road is at grade (floor stage). The public is not going to agree for a high-speed line to be situated at grade. This is the largest objection to the challenge, not solely from the general public but additionally from railway consultants, environmentalists and ecological concerns.”A semi high-speed line located at grade will displace a large number of families. A rough estimate is more than 20,000 families will have to be relocated. The land-hungry people of Kerala will not accept this,” he mentioned.According to his estimate, SilverLine will value `75,000 crore at current and greater than `1.1 lakh crore on completion. “My estimate is based on the last accepted rates of Delhi Rapid Rail Transit System (RRTS), which has a maximum speed of 180 kmph,” he mentioned.

On Kerala Rail Development Corporation’s declare to finish the challenge by 2025, he mentioned this itself exhibits how ignorant the challenge company is. Even the very best executing company within the nation, like Delhi Metro Rail Corporation, will take eight to 10 years to finish such a challenge. KRDCL has not been capable of begin even one rail overbridge of the 27 entrusted with them within the final 5 years.

In response to the CM’s accusation that the BJP is obstructing developmental works in Kerala, Sreedharan requested who had stopped DMRC from beginning essentially the most important railway line, from Nilambur to Nanjangud, which might have diminished the rail distance from Shoranur to Mysuru by 471km and Bengaluru by 197km. The Karnataka authorities had permitted DMRC to take up this work. The extension of the Thrissur-Guruvayur line to Thirunavaya would have solved the heavy congestion at Shoranur Jn.

“Why is the doubling work in Kerala so slow? Because the state government is not able to hand over the land. Who stopped the light metro projects in Thiruvananthapuram and Kozhikode started by the UDF government? If the project was allowed to continue, metro trains would be now running in Thiruvananthapuram and Kozhikode. The high-speed railway, started by the V S Achuthanandan government in 2010, was stopped in 2016 by whom? Strangely, even among the LDF, many are against the SilverLine project, but they are not allowed to express their opinion. The state government’s attempts to bypass the Railway Board by offering to bear the entire cost of the project will be a total mistake. Who authorised this government to make this impossible commitment? Not our MLAs,” he mentioned.