Panel moots new National Highway connecting Kerala, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu

Panel moots new National Highway connecting Kerala, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu

An action committee based at Kanjangad in Kerala has successfully completed a five-day route-study trip covering 700 kms to push for a shorter distance National Highway connecting Kerala, Karnataka and Tamilnadu.

The committee vouches for a feasible road commencing from Kanjangad and culminating in Chennai via Panathur (Kerala), Bhagamandala, Siddapura, Periyapatna, Hunsur, Mysore, Mandya, Bangalore (Karnataka), Hosur, Krishnagiri, Velloor, Yercaud, Kancheepuram (Tamil Nadu). The 12 member committee set off it's journey in a mini bus on October 12 from Kanjangad and returned on Wednesday. 

Joseph Kanakamotta, who is the leader of the team expressed confidence that the proposed route is a feasible one and one of it's kind connecting Arabian Sea with Bay of Bengal. “We are batting for the road since 90 percent of the proposed route is already having roads of highway standard and 10 per cent of the route has bus services. The only thing respective state governments have to do is to interlink and widen these roads to make it an Interstate one,” he told Deccan Herald. The proposed route connects the hilly, remote areas of three southern states as well as western, eastern ghats and Deccan plateau. The action committee was of the opinion that the proposed road will herald overall development of the hitherto neglected areas. 

“Out of the 700 kms route, only 120 km needs to be widened and about 250 kms of the route passes through Mysore and Kodagu area. It is only at Siddapura-Periyapatna stretch, there is hardly any road,” explained Kanakamotta. He further said that on the instance of Kodagu-Mysore MP H Vishwanath, whom the team met and had discussion on the way in Mysore, the route was slightly altered including Siddapura instead of Madikeri. 

Environ concern

Kanakamotta added that they have no apprehension of any environmental bottlenecks as hardly six km is passing through forest periphery along the Bhagamandala portion. “In any case, some trees have to be cut there. But I think it does not come in the way of the project considering it's enormous possibilities.” 

Submission of report 

The action committee will soon be publishing a comprehensive report listing out the benefits of the road including their findings along the study trip and will hand over the same to Union Transport Minister Oscar Fernandes and the Transport ministers of Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Kerala. 

Personally, I conceive this road as a national integration route, apart from considerably reducing the distance to Bangalore and Chennai, said Joseph Kanakamotta. 

The action committee is also planning to meet National Highway Authority of India (NHAI) officials pertaining to the width of the proposed road as the mandatory required width vary in Kerala taking into account the state's population density. 

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