An expert committee would examine geological and hydrological features of areas in and around Parandur near Chennai, where a greenfield airport is proposed to be set up, a group of Ministers on Tuesday (20 December) apprised farmers of Kancheepuram district, who are opposed to the project.
People, who oppose the airport project in their neighbourhood, however, said they would continue to hold protests till the government announced that the new airport would not come up in their villages. It was the 147th day of protest on 20 December.
At the Secretariat in Chennai, Public Works Minister E V Velu, Industries Minister Thangam Thennarasu and Rural Industries Minister T M Anbarasan held talks with farmers, who oppose the project in their villages (in Kancheepuram District) as their farm lands and residential areas would be acquired by the government leading to their displacement.
The government has apprised farmers that a committee of experts from the IIT-Madras and Anna University would study the geological and hydrological aspects of the proposed airport area.
This is the second meeting of Ministers with the farmers. The first meeting was held on October 15 at the Secretariat. The government has said that it would provide compensation to the tune of '3.5 times of market value' for the land, proposed to be acquired in villages in Kancheepuram district.
"The Ministers explained to Ekanapuram villagers the need for the expert committee to look into the geological and hydrological features of the proposed airport site. Ekanapuram farmers accepted this and assured full cooperation," the government release said.
Chennai’s second airport near Kanchi
In August this year, the state Chief Minister M K Stalin announced that a greenfield airport would be built on 4,971 acres in Parandur located around 15 km northeast of popular Hindu pilgrimage city Kanchipuram.
The new airport is planned at an investment of Rs 20,000 crore with a capacity to handle 100 million passengers per annum.
However, 13 villages, including Parandur, Ekanapuram, and Gunagarambakkam in Kancheepuram district, vowed to resist the DMK government's plan to construct a greenfield international airport in their area.
Currently, the existing international airport at Meenambakkam of Chennai handles around 400 flights and almost 40,000 passengers per day (2.2 crore passengers per year).
With no chances to expand its runway or facilities, the present airport is expected to reach saturation soon (3.5 crore passengers per year). Thus the second airport is a necessity, according to infrastructure experts.
Parandur is located around 15 km northeast of Kanchipuram in Tamil Nadu. The shortest road route from Parandur to the existing Chennai airport is 59 km and to Chennai City centre is 70 km.
While the existing Chennai airport is spread across 1,317 acres, the new airport at Parandur is planned to be built on 4,971 acres.
(With inputs from PTI)
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