Express press service
KOCHI: As the government explores options for using land owned by the Travancore Rayons at Vallam in Perumbavoor, a Kochi-based NGO, Roots Society, has drawn up an ambitious plan. The proposal mainly suggests the creation of a botanical garden, a high school and a playground.
Rays of Travancore having been liquidated in 2001, 68 acres in Rayonpuram have now turned into a jungle. Out of a total of 73 acres, KSEB was allocated five acres where it installed a substation.
Although the government has in the past proposed various plans to utilize the remaining land, including the establishment of a campus for the Indian Institute of Medical Sciences, none of this materialized. Recently, Industries Minister P Rajeeve hinted that the proposed e-park could be set up on Rayons land. “Our recommendations focus on integrated development of the region in an environmentally friendly manner,” said Roots Society Secretary Hifsu Rahman.
“The primary objective should be to create an arboretum, which is a botanical garden devoted to trees. The land is now filled with many trees, and therefore a botanical garden will help keep the biodiversity and the ecological system intact. He said the location’s proximity to the Periyar will also provide an opportunity to develop nautical tourism in the region. “It can be converted into a center for nautical tourism. A park and an open-air theater are also part of the botanical garden proposal as there are no good open spaces available for the public in the Perumbavoor area,” Hifsurahman added.
Regarding the suggestion to build a school, Roots Society President Giri Sankar G said the proximity to Kochi airport was an advantage. “A school in Vallam will be useful both for the children of Kochi airport employees and for local residents. Perumbavoor also has a considerable number of migrant workers. A school will also help their children,” he said.
Moreover, there are no large playgrounds in the locality, pointed out Giri Sankar. Roots Society officials had already sent a copy of the proposal to Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan and Tourism Minister Mohamed Riyas, Industry Minister P Rajeeve, Education Minister V Sivankutty, Sports Minister V Abdurahman and Perumbavoor MP Eldhose Kunnappilly. “We hope the government will take a positive stance on our proposal, which is in line with the ‘one world, one health’ policy,” added the president of the Roots Society.
To redeem the forsaken land
Rays of Travancore having been liquidated in 2001, 68 acres in Rayonpuram have now turned into a jungle. Out of a total of 73 acres, KSEB was allocated five acres where it installed a substation. Although the government has in the past made various plans to use the remaining land, none of this has materialized.