Sethusamudram Ship Channel Project (SSCP)

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Sethusamudram Ship Channel Project (SSCP) 

  • Recently, the Supreme Court has questioned the delay in filing the reply by the Central Government on the petition regarding the status of national heritage to ‘Ram Setu’.
  • Ram Setu is also called ‘Adam’s Bridge’. It is a chain of limestone shoals in a shallow sea between Pamban Island or Rameswaram Island on the south-east coast of Tamil Nadu and Mannar Island on the north-west coast of Sri Lanka.
  • In view of the implementation of the Sethusamudram Ship Channel Project (SSCP), there has been a demand to give National Heritage status to Ram Setu.
  • Under this project, it is planned to build a shipping route between India and Sri Lanka for the movement of ships in the Palk Strait.

Two channels (routes) are proposed in it:

  • The first across ‘Adam’s Bridge’ and the second through ‘Palk Bay’.
  • The Supreme Court had stayed the work on this project in the year 2007. The Central Government is also keen to find another route for the SSCP without damaging the Ram Setu.

Significance of Sethusamudram Ship Channel Project

  • Will reduce the shipping distance between the east and west coasts of India.
  • Strengthen national security by improving navigation for Indian Coast Guard and naval ships.

Concerns over the Sethusamudram Ship Channel Project

  • It will destroy the natural barrier between the Bay of Bengal and the shallower and calmer waters of the ‘Pak Bay’.
  • Oil and marine pollution caused by shipping traffic will affect the ecosystems of the region.

Source – The Hindu

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