The cash-strapped Kerala State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) that was finding it difficult to make both ends meet for the past few months has got the needed relief with Finance Minister T.M. Thomas Isaac providing a special financial assistance of ₹1,000 crore in the Budget.
In addition to the special assistance, Dr. Isaac said another ₹109 crore has been earmarked in the Plan for the State transport undertaking.
Although the Minister has not spelled out how the ₹1,000 crore in the Budget would be utilised, the crisis-ridden KSRTC will use the funds for paying the salary and wages to those on the rolls. The KSRTC had received ₹1,000 crore in the last Budget also to overcome the crisis.
The Finance Minister has provided to the water transport sector an allocation of ₹111 crore and ₹26 crore out of it has been earmarked for State Water Transport. An amount of ₹75 crore has been provided for the Coastal Shipping and Inland Navigation Department.
Though the Budget is silent on the commissioning of Phase I of the Vizhinjam International Deepwater seaport project, it has been pointed out that an amount of ₹350 crore is required for the project up to March 2021.
₹69 cr. for Port dept.
The Finance Minister said funds would be made available from ₹1,000 crore set apart for major projects. Apart from this, an amount of ₹69 crore is earmarked for the Port Department.
The laying of 11 KV line, construction of water treatment plant and piling of berth of the seaport, the dream project of the State, has been completed.
Land acquisition is up to 97%. The Finance Minister said 20% of breakwater construction, 60% of land filling and 60% of concreting of Acropods have only been completed.