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  India   All India  28 Jul 2019  Makeover of an island

Makeover of an island

Published : Jul 28, 2019, 3:06 am IST
Updated : Jul 28, 2019, 3:06 am IST

The tiny village of Kakkathuruth shot to international fame when National Geographic in 2017 featured the sunset there as a must watch.

The shikara boat that can accommodate up to ten people being readied at Kakkathuruth. 	(Photo: Asian Age)
 The shikara boat that can accommodate up to ten people being readied at Kakkathuruth. (Photo: Asian Age)

Kochi: The tiny island surrounded by the Vembanad lake in Central Kerala was resting untouched by outside world until it got featured in the National Geographic's must visit list three years back.

Ever-since, tourists started flocking to the 'Isle of Crows' but the main issue faced by visitors is lack of basic facilities like toilet complexes.

Now all that is set to be changed with the Tourism department working on a project to develop basic infrastructure facilities in the island inhabited by a population of less than 1000.

“Under the proposed project, we'll set up walkways, toilet complexes, refreshment stalls and boat jetties in the initial phase. Since the area comes under the Coastal Regulation Zone, the work will be carried out without violating norms and in consultation with experts," tourism department deputy director T.G. Abhilash Kumar told DC.

"The detailed project report (DPR) is being prepared and will be submitted before the next Responsible Tourism wor king group in three months. We'll mainly play the facilitator role and aims to better life of islanders too by extending better facility and job opportunities," the official said.

At present, the only way to reach the island is by means of traditional row boats which are available from 6 am to 9 pm.

“We made several attempts to set up walkways without success. No contractor is willing to take up the works as they have to bring construction materials to the island by boat, a costly affair. Our budget has no provision to provide 'special conveyance'," said panchayat member Binumol A.P., while adding the project by the Tourism department will be a blessing for residents and tourists alike.

Meanwhile, the long pending demand of islanders, a bridge to connect them with the mainland, is set to become a reality. “Our earlier atte mpt to construct the brid ge years back had failed after one of the land owners opposed the project and moved the High Court. Now we've been allocated with a fund of Rs 34 crore by the present government. The soil testing exercise is over and the land acquisition proc ess has started," she said.

The small island of ‘Kakkathuruttu’, located in Vembanad backwaters of Alappuzha, rose to fame following the report in National Geographic which described the sun set view there as "shadows lengthen and the sky shifts from pale blue to sapphire."

Ever since the report appeared, the ialand which was visited by an oocasional traveller has been recieving them by the dozen. The island still has no proper roads nor motor vehicles but the scattered waterbodies featuring blooming lotus and water lillies  with the forest-like lush green cover continue mesmerize nature lovers.

Tags: vembanad lake, kakkathuruth