Karnataka Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai rejected proposals for two interstate railway lines by the Kerala government. The CM stated that the proposed lines could harm the ecosystem as the planned lines would have to pass through eco-sensitive zones. 

CM Bommai clarified the decision after his meeting with the Chief Minister of Kerala, Pinarayi Vijayan. The meeting was held in Bengaluru on Sunday. “It is not possible to take up any development works in ecologically sensitive areas and in wildlife sanctuaries,” Bommai said. 

The two proposed railway lines would link Kanhangad (Kasargod district) and Kaniyur(Coimbatore district) and Thalacherry and Mysuru. Bommai also rejected the proposal for increasing the number of inter-state night buses from two to four. These proposals were long pending demands of the Kerala government. 

The proposed Kanhangad-Kaniyur railway line would have a 40 km route in Kerala and 31 km in Karnataka. The Karnataka government said the line wouldn’t be beneficial to the passengers. It will also have to pass through the ecologically sensitive, bio-diverse Western Ghats. Similarly, the proposed line to connect Thalacherry and Mysuru was rejected because it would cross through Bandipur-Nagarhole National Parks and would harm the flora and fauna. 

Bommai also said Karnataka rejected the proposal for an underground rail route in forest areas.

The meeting was held as decided on September 3 at the southern zonal council meeting of chief ministers of southern states led by union minister Amit Shah. Post the meeting, Bommai took to Twitter and said, “Had a fruitful meeting with Shri @pinarayivijayan, the Chief Minister of Kerala. Various issues of interstate and mutual interest were discussed.”