COVID-19 : Key projects in Kerala hit as migrant workers return home

COVID-19 : Key projects in Kerala hit as migrant workers return home

Agency News

Kochi, May 5 : Several key projects in Kerala have been hit with the migrant workers returning to their home states amid COVID-19 pandemic. With just a couple of weeks left before the southwest monsoon begins in Kerala, these projects are likely to be delayed by several months, sources said on Tuesday. The projects that needed just a few more weeks for completion have also been stalled. The affected projects include Vyttila and Kundanoor flyovers, Kochi Metro's extension to Pettah, Vizhinjam project and Punalur-Ponkunnam Road.

If the work is stalled for next three weeks due to shortage of labourers, and the monsoon arrives by June, then the project cannot be completed for months. As harvesting season is set to begin in Odisha and West Bengal, there is no clarity on when the workers will return. Only the construction of Pulimuttu (sea wall) was pending in the Vizhinjam project. Representatives of Adani, who was tasked with the project, said the construction has been stalled due to shortage of workers. The work will have to be suspended during the monsoon when huge waves will be triggered.

The plan to finish the work before the start of the monsoon has now gone awry. The construction of Kazhakootam-Karode National Highway is also moving at a snail's pace. The estimated cost of these projects run into several crores of rupees. Most of these projects have pre-monsoon preparative works which were affected by the absence of workers, the sources added. (UNI)