Projects like SilverLine can’t be accomplished with struggle cries, must be as per regulation: HC to Kerala govt

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Projects of the “magnitude” like that of SilverLine “cannot be hurried” or “completed on war cries”, reasonably they should be carried out in accordance with the regulation if they should have any legitimacy, the Kerala High Court mentioned to the state authorities on Wednesday.

The remarks by Justice Devan Ramachandran got here whereas listening to a number of pleas difficult the way by which the state and the Kerala Rail Development Corporation Ltd (Okay-Rail) had been finishing up land surveys in reference to the LDF authorities’s formidable semi excessive pace rail hall challenge — SilverLine.

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“No project of this magnitude can be completed by war cries, it has to be done as per the law. A project of this nature cannot be hurried. It has to be as per the law, then only will it have any legitimacy. You have to follow the law to the hilt.

“Such projects cannot be taken forward based on fear by putting up such large poles,” the courtroom mentioned and added this was by far the most important challenge within the state and hopefully “they (state and Centre) are doing it with their eyes wide open”.

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The petitioners had opposed placing up of huge concrete poles to mark the land surveyed for the SilverLine challenge saying it was in violation of the Survey and Boundaries Act and these constructions had been blocking entry to numerous people’ properties.

The courtroom, on December 23 final yr, had directed the state and Okay-Rail to put in survey stones of the prescribed requirements below the Kerala Survey Rules.

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On Wednesday, Okay-Rail knowledgeable the courtroom that previous to December 23, 2021, order 2,834 poles had already been put up, however after that survey stones had been being laid as per the Act and the orders of the courtroom.

Justice Ramachandran mentioned, “You messed it up by doing this. This difficulty rose due to your haste. You have obstructed entry to houses. What you’ve gotten accomplished is egregiously improper as per this courtroom. Surveys may be carried out for any challenge, nevertheless it must be as per the regulation.

“If you start laying such large, leviathan poles for each project, it would be difficult to move around in the state,” the courtroom added.

After the state authorities and Okay-Rail sought time for an in depth listening to of the problems raised within the pleas, the courtroom listed the matter on January 20 and directed that until the subsequent date survey stones can be put in as per the rules, by the competent authority and of the prescribed dimension.

The courtroom additionally directed Okay-Rail what it proposes to do with the “offending” 2,834 concrete poles already put in “which apparently are in violation of the Rules”.

The courtroom additionally requested the Centre’s lawyer to be current on the subsequent date to make clear the standing relating to the challenge, saying “you cannot keep the court in the dark”.

“We are groping in the dark. I want the Union of India to say if the project is on. What does Railway mean by in-principle approval?” had been the opposite queries raised by Justice Ramachandran.

The state authorities had lately instructed the excessive courtroom that laying of boundary stones for the challenge by saying that “only preparatory and preliminary works” had been being carried out.

In an affidavit filed within the excessive courtroom, the state has mentioned that it solely issued a authorities order (GO) on August 18, 2021 in accordance sanction for conducting a Social Impact Assessment (SIA) examine and for constituting an knowledgeable group to judge the report of the identical.

The state authorities has mentioned that within the August 2021 order it has been made clear that steps to proceed with land acquisition could be taken solely after getting the ultimate approval for the challenge from the Railway Board.
However, in the identical affidavit, the state has additionally mentioned, “It is also pointed out that as per GO(MS) No.3642/21/RD dated December 31, 2021, revised orders have been issued according for the acquisition of 1,221 hectares of land of various villages for the Semi High Speed Railway Line – SilverLine – project.” The state authorities has additional mentioned the boundary stones had been being laid to allow the SIA group to establish the land and conduct the examine.

Kerala authorities’s formidable SilverLine challenge, which is predicted to scale back travel time from Thiruvananthapuram to Kasaragod to round 4 hours, is being opposed by the opposition Congress-led UDF, which has been alleging that it was “unscientific and impractical” and can put an enormous monetary burden on the state.

The 540 kilometre stretch from Thiruvananthapuram to Kasaragod could be developed by Okay-Rail — a three way partnership of the Kerala authorities and the Railway Ministry for growing railway infrastructure within the southern state.

Starting from the state capital, SilverLine trains may have stoppages at Kollam, Chengannur, Kottayam, Ernakulam, Thrissur, Tirur, Kozhikode and Kannur earlier than reaching Kasaragod.

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