SALEM: Seeking to further push Tamil Nadu’s case for the Salem-Chennai ‘green corridor’ Expressway project, Chief Minister Edappadi K. Palaniswami asserted that the AIADMK government was not forcing any land owner to party with his/her land for the project. “There is not even a one per cent intention to coax or stress or mentally pressure anyone to part with their land for the project,” Palaniswami told reporters at a press conference here on Monday.
"It is in the overall welfare of people and considering the growing infrastructure needs for the development of Tamil Nadu that we are supporting the eight-lane expressway," he said.
He disclosed that even this morning, 70 farmers near Salem had given him a petition urging that the expressway project be implemented and that they were voluntarily coming forward to give their lands for it if only the local people benefitted from newer employment opportunities. "Like this, several people want the project, while some do not like the project; but we are not compelling anyone," Palaniswami said.
Asking whether land was not acquired for widening roads and for new bypass and other roads during the earlier DMK regime, Palaniswami said better roads and faster connectivity was required even more today as vehicle population has jumped 300 per cent now. And without road connectivity, economic development and jobs-generation for the youth would stagnate, he said.
METTUR OPENING : On opening of Mettur reservoir for Cauvery delta irrigation this year, Palaniswami expressed the hope that with the monsoon reviving in Kerala and catchment areas like Kodagu in Karnataka receiving good rains, inflows from Karnataka's reservoirs into Tamil Nadu would increase in the coming days.
Palaniswami assured that once there was adequate storage of water in Mettur reservoir, at about 90-feet level, after consulting experts and officials, the dam will be opened for canal irrigation which should be helpful for the delta farmers for the 'Samba' cultivation this year.
"We will have to ascertain the water level at Mettur on Aadi Perukku day (August 3 this year) and then take a call on releasing water from Mettur," he said, adding, "we will be more than happy if Karnataka releases the quantum of water into Cauvery as per the Final Accord."
Reiterating that Tamil Nadu was committed to put down any terrorist element in the state, Palaniswami said the Police Intelligence department was doing a good job. State police intelligence had even tipped off the Sri Lankan authorities about the imminent attack on churches there recently, he said.
Palaniswami reiterated that DMK leader M K Stalin's "dream" of coming back to power in Tamil Nadu will not be fulfilled even in 2021. The AIADMK was going strong and even supporters of AMMK leader TTV Dhinakaran were all returning to the mother party, he added....