labels: goshree islands development authority, ports
Fresh tenders to sell reclaimed land off Kochi’s Marine Drive news
Jays Jacob
27 February 2003

Kochi: A steering committee meeting of the Goshree Islands Development Authority (GIDA) has decided to float fresh tenders to sell the 25 hectares of reclaimed land off Marine Drive here.

The decision follows the pathetic outcome of an earlier experiment, in which GIDA received just two tenders. The meeting, held in Thiruvananthapuram, also decided to reject these tenders on technical grounds. The new date of re-tendering has not been decided.

With this, doubts about the timely completion of the project, aimed at connecting islands off Vypeen to the mainland through a series of bridges, has got a fresh lease of life. The steering committee, chaired by Kerala Local Administration Minister Cherkalam Abdulla, also decided to approach the state government for a fresh guarantee of about Rs 30 crore for meeting the October 2003 deadline.

The government has already extended a guarantee of Rs 29 crore. “But we need about Rs 40 crore for the timely completion of the work. The consortium of banks is ready to meet the total financial requirement, but they need government guarantee. We hope the government would consider the second instalment,” say GIDA sources.

About the connectivity of the reclaimed land, the meeting authorised Cochin Port Trust to prepare a plan for extending the Shanmugham Road to Goshree land from the high court area. This, the sources say, would add to the value of the land. “The Port Trust has given an assurance that the construction of the bridges will be completed by October 2003 provided the funds flow without any break.”

GIDA needs Rs 62 crore for the project, and needs Rs 40 crore immediately. The government, the sources add, is likely to extend guarantee in two instalments. “The meeting concluded on a positive note. The decision to avail government guarantee will help in the speedy completion of the work,” says Ernakulam district collector Gyanesh Kumar.

The meeting was also attended by mayor C M Dinesh Mani, minister M A Kuttappan, Port Trust chairman Jacob Thomas, law secretary Ram Kumar, district panchayat president K B Mohammedkutty Master, V K Ibrahim Kunju MLA, GIDA project director M S Jaya and engineer Simon Mathew.

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Fresh tenders to sell reclaimed land off Kochi’s Marine Drive