Mangaluru, Aug 26: A memorandum of understanding (MoU) was signed between the government of Karnataka and union territory Lakshadweep for the construction of a dedicated berth for Lakshadweep vessels at the Old Port at Bunder here on Wednesday August 26.

Textile and ports minister Baburao Chinchansur who visited the city for this purpose addressed the media and said, “I assure all support and cooperation on behalf of the Karnataka government for this project. I will ask the officials to finish the the work within the deadline.

“I have asked the central ministry for an additional grant of Rs 200 crore to develop the ports and he has responded positively. This jetty is the dream project of MLA J R Lobo. It was pending for 35 years and now with his efforts we are getting a grant of Rs 50 crore. We will try to finish the work at the earliest,” he added.

Mangaluru south MLA J R Lobo said, “Today with the signing of this agreement Mangaluru Old Port has achieved a major milestone. Due to lack of infrastructure, trade between Lakshadweep and Mangaluru has declined. With the construction of this new jetty it will develop in the coming days. I request the minister to make sure that dredging is done at least for 7 meters so that big ships can anchor here.”

MP Nalin Kumar Kateel said, “I agree with the MLA that dredging needs to be done at least for 7 meters. We are facing the same problem in Kulai and Hejamady jetties.”

MP of Lakshadweep P P Mohammed Faisal said, “Through this MoU I hope that the trade relations between Mangaluru and Lakshadweep grow. I request the minister to make temporary arrangements until the new berth is constructed. There should be temporary wash rooms, waiting lounge etc.”

After signing the MoU, the minister inspected the Old Port. The new jetty will be constructed at a cost of Rs 50 crore on an aread of about 8,000 sq ft. Work is expected to start once the environmental and central government clearances are obtained.

MLC Ivan D’Souza, Lakshadweep administrator Rajesh Prasad, port director Captain Mohan, corporator Lathif and others were present.

Courtesy : Daijiworld