Kerala: Communists And Congress Unite To Oppose Indian Railways' Plans To Redevelop Ernakulam Station

Kerala: Communists And Congress Unite To Oppose Indian Railways' Plans To Redevelop Ernakulam Station CPI (M) General Secretary Sitaram Yechury with Congress Leader Rahul Gandhi. A representative image.

In a move that may halt the plans of Indian Railways to redevelop the Ernakulam South railway station, various trade unions led by the major political parties of Kerala have decided to protest against the railway station redevelopment project.

The trade unions have termed the redevelopment project as “efforts by the Railways to sell the Ernakulam South railway station and the 48 acres on which the facilities are located.”

A statement issued said that trade unions will protest on Wednesday (03 March) on premises of the railway station. While Congress MP Hibi Eden will inaugurate the protest meeting, CPI(M) leader K. Chandran Pillai will preside over it, reports The Hindu.

In January 2021, the Rail Land Development Authority (RLDA) invited bids for the redevelopment of Ernakulam Junction railway station in Kerala on a PPP model as a part of Smart City Projects launched by the central government.

The Ernakulam railway station is strategically located near the bus stand and well-connected through public transportation with Kochi.

The Ernakulam station is planned to be developed on a design, build, finance, operate, transfer (DBFOT) model, and the estimated cost of the project is Rs 229 crore and is scheduled for completion in three years.

The first phase of the project will see both the eastern and western sides of the station being developed over a period of three years.

The 48 acres on which the present railway station facilities are located will be handed over to a private company. It will take up the development of the station, which includes construction of commercial complexes. According to the report, the company will be allowed to keep the land and facilities for 60 years.

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