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Kerala to go ahead with Athirappilly project: Minister

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Power minister Kadakampally Surendran told the assembly on Tuesday that the Athirappilly hydro-electric power project hasn’t been abandoned by the state government.

He said efforts are on to reach a consensus on the project, reports The Times of India.

The 163 MW project, planned in the water resource bed of the Chalakudy river in Thrissur district, was pending for the past several years due to protest from environmentalists.

However, opposition leader Ramesh Chennithala criticised the move to revive the controversial project.

The UDF will not allow the state government to go ahead with the project and hence we are not ready for any kind of consensus on the issue, he told reporters later in the day.

The power minister said the time for the execution of the project has been extended, based on the strict stipulations from the Union forest and environment ministry.

However it has not become possible to cut trees in the project site due to the stiff resistance from people against the project. Under these circumstances, the government is looking forward to reaching a consensus for going ahead with the project.

But Chennithala said that the UDF would oppose the project plan at all costs. “Following stiff resistance from the people against the project, I myself had visited the project site.

The popular sentiment among the people in the region is against the project. Their concern is that once the project is launched, around 140 hectares of land would go under water,” said Chennithala.


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