Cochin Cancer Research Centre works to start in mid-May

INKEL to start construction if KIIFB ensures funds.

KOCHI: Public-private partnership firm INKEL which has been tasked with building the Cochin Cancer Research Centre (CCRC) is readying to start the construction works on it by middle of May if the fund flow for the same is ensured by the Kerala Infrastructure Investment Fund Board (KIIFB) under the state government. The target is to complete the project in 600 days and the fund flow would be the only concern in meeting the target. KIIFB clearance for the project which was just a formality is now over with KIIFB CEO Dr K M Abraham issuing the orders in this regard on March 8 this year. Now the works go into the tendering stage.

The KIIF Board, at its 28th board meeting held on March 21 last year, had granted conditional approval for the 53 projects submitted for its consideration including CCRC. The board had also authorised the CEO of KIIFB to approve projects not exceeding value of Rs.400 crore each, subject to compliance of the conditions set by KIIFB for project financing and subsequent ratification of the board. The CEO exercising his powers in this regard approved the project, clearing decks for tendering works.

"The tenders are expected to be invited by the end of this month and they will be finalized in the next four weeks after which we hope to begin construction works by May middle," Special Officer of CCRC and District Collector Muhammed K Safirulla told DC. The CCRC will come up in eight floors in an area of 5.3 lakh sq ft. "The landscaping works at the site including laying of roads which are being undertaken at an outlay of Rs 4 crore are set to start next week," said Safirulla.

However a cause of concern is that the CCRC project outlay has come down from the initial Rs 391 crore to Rs 379.73 crore in the present approved project which is cited by some as pruning the spending on the ambitious project which can affect the facilities offered at the centre and area. The order of the CEO on March 8 says that Rs 379.73 crore also covers the IT, medical equipment and furniture costs.

The delay in launching the NRI chit fund by the government which is expected to channel Rs 10,000 crore into KIIFB bonds to fund infrastructure projects in the state including CCRC, has cast its shadow over the projects including CCRC. The chit fund was expected to take off in last October. Any delay in the flow of KIIFB funds will affect CCRC project also.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle. )
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