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Kovalam-Bekal waterway: Kerala govt to acquire land for Rs 186 crore in Kasargod

Nileswaram river: Image Credit: KWIL

Another major artificial canal is coming up in Kerala with Kerala government giving its nod for acquiring land at a cost of Rs 186 crore for digging up the canal and a navigation lock in Kasaragod for the proposed Kovalam-Bekal waterway.

The artificial canal will be built between Neeleswaram River and Chithari River in Kasaragod district. The navigation lock will be constructed at Nambiarkal. For both the projects 124 acres of land will be acquired and Kerala Infrastructure Investment Fund Board (KIIFB) will allot Rs 186 crore for the purpose. The government has decided to expedite the construction of the canal to complete the inland waterway project connecting Kovalam in the South and Bekal in Kasaragod district.

The canal will be built between Neeleswaram River and Chithari River in Kasaragod district. As per the latest government order,1.3076 hectares will be acquired at Kanhangad village for navigation lock and for the artificial canal, 42.8485 hectares spread across Ajanur, Bela and Hosdurg villages will be acquired (total: 44.156 hectares).

The government has already completed the first phase of the project after the first LDF government led by Pinarayi Vijayan set a deadline to complete the project in 2021. “As land acquisition is a major issue, the project is getting delayed. We hope to complete the works by 2025,” said a senior government official.

The waterway with a length of over 600 km will pass through existing rivers and canals in nine districts. Once completed, the waterway will emerge as one of the major projects in the state aimed at easing traffic congestion on the main national highway in the state and also for promoting tourism.

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