New Delhi: The Union Ports, Shipping & Waterways Ministry has accorded approval for sanction of Rs 50.30 crore to develop an all-weather ROPAX (Roll-on/Roll-off Passenger) Jetty and allied infrastructure in Odisha, connecting Kaninali in Bhadrak district with Talachua in Kendrapara, under the Sagarmala initiative.
The total capital cost of the project is Rs 110.60 crore which includes construction of RO-PAX Jetty at Kaninali and Talachua, utility infrastructures such as parking area development, navigational aids and dredging.
The Odisha government will fund the remaining cost.
This project will reduce travel time for passengers from 6 hours by road to an hour by waterway. The development of the existing ghat with all-weather ROPAX jetties is being carried out with intent of accommodating boats, launches and other vessels as well as for plying of vessels having capacity to carry 10 light motor vehicles, 20 motorbikes, along with 60 passengers at a time, simultaneously ensuring safety of all passengers and vehicles.
The project will facilitate indirect employment opportunities to locals around Dhamra river and reduce road distance of 200 km from Talachua to Dhamra, a ministry statement said.
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, approximately 4 km from Kaninali Ghat, for their livelihood.
But since there is no road connectivity, the local population depends upon passenger ferries at Kaninali and Talachua ghats to cross the river, a stretch of 7 km. 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 connectivity will increase the commercial and business activities and uplift the socio-economic status of the surrounding region, the statement said.