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Do not restrict the width of National Highways in Kerala to 30 meters

This petition had 191 supporters

In 2010, Politicians in Kerala, cutting across party lines, decided to restrict the width of National Highways in the State to 30 meters. Later, through the intervention of the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI), it was decided to have 45 meters width with 4 lanes, wherever possible and 30 meters, in other places, at a time when other States opted for NHs with minimum 60 meters width with 6 lanes.

Today, the average speed on the NHs in Kerala is about 30 Km/hr. On an average, 12 deaths are reported daily on account of accidents on NHs. The amount of time, money, manpower, fuel and other resources wasted on these NHs because of slow moving traffic has never been calculated.

Looking at the growth of vehicular traffic, what we need is NHs with minimum 70 meters width with 8 lanes (4 + 4 dual carriageway). Wherever land acquisition is a problem, like in junctions or severely congested areas, there should be flyovers and we also need bypass for all major cities on the NHs - Kollam, Alappuzha, Kozhikode and Kannur.

After three years, now the State Government is pushing the Union Ministry of Road Transport and Highways to agree to reduce the width of NH being developed in the State from 45 metres to 30 metres. But the NHAI is opposing this. NHAI has already scrapped six projects in Kerala due to non-availability of land which is the responsibility of the State Government.

Kerala has about 1,500 kms of NHs, the prominent ones being NH 66 (Kasargod - Thiruvananthapuram) and NH544 (Walayar - Ernakulam). We need better roads. Needless to say that better roads will bring in overall development of the State much faster than any other project or scheme can do.

So friends, please react before it's too late. There won't be any space for you to drive on National Highways in Kerala if our politicians have their way. Bowing to pressure from elected representatives, the Union Ministry of Road Transport & Highways might agree to reduce the width of 829 km of NHs in Kerala from 45 mts to 30 mts. This is going to be disastrous. We should have a minimum of 60 meters, so as to accommodate the vehicular traffic expected in the next 10-15 years.

Also, please feel free to share this petition. We need about a lakh signatures to make an impact.

Photo Courtesy: NHAI

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