Chennai, Jan 23 : The Tamil Nadu Government has requested the Centre not to shelve the Sethusamudram Shipping Canal Project because of the issues raised by some people for their political gain.
In his customary address at the beginning of the State Assembly session, Governor said that this project is a long-pending dream of the people of Tamil Nadu and "desired" by scholars and eminent personalities.
The construction work at Ram Sethu Project had been stopped by the Supreme Court after a number of writ petition were filed seeking stoppage of demolition of the mythological bridge believed to have been constructed by Lord Rama.
"This government urges the union government not to go back on its endeavour to transform the future of people of Tamil Nadu to one of progress and prosperity and to continue with implementation of this unique and constructive project," Barnala said while addressing the State Assembly.
The 560-million dollar project, approved by the government in 2005, plans to dredge a channel in a narrow strip of sea between India and Sri Lanka, reducing distances and cutting costs for freight traffic.
When the project is finished, ships sailing between India's Western and Eastern coasts will not have to go around the south of Sri Lanka, and is expected to save up to 36 hours of sailing time which would strengthen the Country's economy by expanding International and maritime trade.
Hindu groups have been opposing the 560 million dollars project, saying it would destroy the 'holy' Ram Sethu, a 48-kilometre chain of limestone shoals that once linked Rameswaram in Tamil Nadu to Mannar in Sri Lanka.