Within days after the victory of DMK in Tamil Nadu assembly elections, various organisations and eminent personalities of Tamil Nadu have written to Chief Minister-designate M K Stalin to not allow reopening of Vedanta copper unit and to scrap the Chennai-Salem eight lane expressway project.
The signers include director Vetrimaran, actor Vijay Sethupathi and former Madras High Court judge (retd) D Hariparanthaman, reports The Hindu.
They also requested the DMK chief to scrap the Adani port expansion at Kattupalli, the Kanniyakumari International Container Terminal and the Chittoor-Thachur 6-lane expressway.
“At a time when development needs a reorientation and the country requires strong environmental laws, the Union government is busy diluting the meagre protection offered by the laws, such as EIA notification and Coastal Regulation Zone notification,” they said.
Notably in March 2019, M K Stalin said that he would get rid of the proposed Salem-Chennai eight-lane expressway project if his party formed the government and would focus on expanding the existing highway network.
The 277-km Chennai-Salem Expressway which is being constructed at a cost of Rs 7,500 crore will cut travel time between the two cities by half to about two hours and 15 minutes. It is part of the NDA government’s ambitious 'Bharatmala Pariyojana' scheme.
Another expressway that the signers want to be scrapped is the newly declared National Highway Chittoor-Thatcher Road named NH 716B (160km). It will facilitate access to the city and decongest Chennai roads. This will also pass through industrially developed areas and will cost Rs 4,000 crore.
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