CPI-M general secretary Sitaram Yechury on Friday reiterated that there is no difference of opinion in the party on the pet project of Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan - K-Rail (Silverline). Talking to media persons on the sidelines of the 23rd Party Congress in Kannur, Yechury said: "This has been said before also that there exists no difference of opinion on K-Rail in the party. If you want, I can say it in any other language also." Yechury's remarks came after media reports surfaced that the CPI-M central leadership is not in agreement with view of Vijayan and the party's Kerala unit. Yechury has been in the dock as in the past few days since the Party Congress began on Wednesday, questions surfaced that while he and his party have been strongly opposing the Ahmedabad- Mumbai bullet train, the same is not being done against the K-Rail. There were reports that some party members from Bengal, who took part in the ongoing deliberations at the Party Congress, cautioned the Kerala unit to see that K-Rail should be taken forward only after doing all the proper homework as they recalled what happened in Nandigram.
Meanwhile, another politburo member S. Ramachandran Pillai on Friday clarified that -- Yechury, Vijayan and he himself -- all have the one and same opinion on K-Rail. "It's our wish and desire that K-Rail is essential for the development of Kerala and all are of the same view on this. We will go forward with this by convincing the people. People who do not want any development to take place are against this," said Pillai. If completed, the K-Rail project will see a 529.45 km corridor connecting Thiruvananthapuram to Kasaragod with semi - high speed trains covering the distance in around four hours. Both the Congress and the BJP are fiercely opposing this project citing it's not needed for Kerala, given the massive cost which they say will be in excess of Rs 1.50 lakh crore, would be an environmental, economic disaster and be a huge burden for the next generation. The state has been witnessing massive protest ever since the K-Rail authorities started laying marking stones to conduct a social impact assessment study, and at numerous places, clashes broke out between the protesters and police. But since the beginning of the Party Congress, the instructions had been given to the K-Rail officials not to venture out to lay the marking stones, as Vijayan and the party did not wish to create a bad image when the party's premier meeting takes place.