Bhubaneswar (Odisha) [India] April 16 (ANI): The Union Ministry of Ports, Shipping and Waterways (MoPSW) accorded administrative approval for sanction of Rs 50.30 crore for developing RO-PAX (Roll-on/Roll-off Passenger) jetty project and allied infrastructure connecting Kaninali in Bhadrak district and Talachua in Kendrapara district of Odisha on Dhamra river under the Sagarmala initiative.
According to a release by the Ministry of Ports, Shipping and Waterways, the Odisha government will fund another 50 per cent cost of the project.
The total capital cost of the project is Rs 110.60 crore which includes the construction of RO-PAX jetty at Kaninali and Talachua, utility infrastructures such as parking area development, navigational aids and dredging.
After completion, the project will reduce travel time for passengers from 6 hours by road to 1 hour by waterway.
"The development of the existing ghat with all-weather RO-PAX jetties is being carried out with the intent of accommodating boats, launches and other vessels as well as to ply vessel having the capacity to carry 10 light motor vehicles, 20 motorbikes along with 60 passengers at a time, simultaneously ensuring the safety of all passengers and vehicles," read the release.
The project will facilitate indirect employment opportunities to locals around the Dhamra river and reduce the road distance of 200 kilometres from Talachua to Dhamra.
Notably, Kaninali in Bhadrak district and Talachua in Kendrapada district, are located on the northern and southern banks of River Dhamra respectively. The people of Talachua and nearby villages largely depend upon Dhamra port for their livelihood, which is approximately 4 kilometres from Kaninali Ghat.
"Since there is no connectivity through roads, the local population depends upon passenger ferries at ghats of Kaninali and Talachua to cross the river (a stretch of 7 Kilometers). Currently, a number of passenger vehicles move through private boats without safety and passengers face difficulty in embarking and disembarking from launches on an everyday basis. This project will enhance the safety of passengers and vehicles with state-of-the-art utility infrastructure," the ministry said.
"The connectivity will increase the commercial and business activities and uplift the socio-economic status of the surrounding region," it added. (ANI)