Kerala to get airstrips in remote tourist locales like Wayanad, Idukky and Kasargod

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Thiruvananthapuram | Published: November 15, 2019 1:24:57 PM

Wayanad, hogging limelight as Rahul Gandhi’s parliamentary constituency, is to notch basic air-connectivity and a tunnel road.

Kerala to get airstrips in remote tourist locales like Wayanad, Idukky and KasargodIt was chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan who revealed these projects during his weekly televised debate programme.

Wayanad, hogging limelight as Rahul Gandhi’s parliamentary constituency, is to notch basic air-connectivity and a tunnel road. Besides the greenfield Sabari airport — the state’s fifth airport — the Kerala government is going ahead with airstrips in remote tourist locales like Wayanad, Idukky and Kasargod. It was chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan who revealed these projects during his weekly televised debate programme. Connectivity would be the thrust of LDF government’s infrastructure development agenda, he added.

“We intend to build air-strips in Wayanad, Idukky and Kasargod. The realisation of Sabari airport would help not just the pilgrims to Ayyappa shrine, but also those travelling to Thiruvalla and Chenganur,” he said. Louis Berger Consulting is the consultant for the Sabari airport project.

Moreover, the flight connectivity between the four international airports in the state would be improved. Parleys are on with the civil aviation ministry to get more flight services between Thiruvananthapuram, Kochi, Kozhikode and Kannur airports. Funds will not be a bar for the Rs. 66,000-crore semi-highspeed rail that Kerala is planning to build, he said, in reply to a question. The state government is working on this project as a JV with Indian Railways.

“Work on Water Metro, the first in the country, is on in Kochi, to international standards. And, one would be able to travel in the Kovalam-Bakel inland waterways by next year,” Vijayan said.

Rahul Gandhi’s constituency has more bonanzas in store, if the Kerala CM’s plans effectuate within one-and-a-half years — before the LDF government’s tenure ends. According to the CM, the government intends to build a tunnel road to Wayanad since the road through Thamarassery mountain pass — in use currently — often gets unusable due to floods. Wayanad will also be connected to Kannur, which has an international airport, by building a new road, he added.

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