KOCHI: The stalemate over the much-awaited railway overbridge at Vathuruthy continues as several rounds of talks held between various stakeholder agencies, especially Indian Navy, have failed. Prof K.V. Thomas MP had recently convened a meeting of stakeholder agencies which also failed to reach a consensus. Mr Thomas told DC that the Navy was objecting to the proposal as the current alignment was not acceptable to it. The authorities cited safety concerns of the Navy aircraft at the adjacent naval airport.
“Three different alignments have been submitted and are under consideration, of which the third one is more or less acceptable to the Navy. A sub-committee has been formed and the panel has met a few times. But no decision could be taken on finalising the alignment. The Navy can’t be blamed for the stand as the area is strategically important. Discussions will continue and a final decision on alignment is expected to be taken soon,” he added.
Unlike other flyovers, several agencies are involved in the construction of the ROB at Vathuruthy, including the corporation, Indian Navy, Port Trust, Roads and Bridges Development Corpo ration and railways. Meanwhile, the Navy has proposed a subway project for Vathuruthy. “If the ROB is not built, the subway proposal has to be considered,” Mr Thomas said.
Earlier, the Cochin Port Trust had objected to the project as it was not willing to surrender its 18 cents of land required for the overbridge construction. Later, the agency agreed to provide the land to implement the long- standing demand for the ROB. The delay in constructing the ROB has resulted in traffic bottlenecks in the area and hardships for the residents of West Kochi...