New Delhi: The Shipping Ministry is awaiting response from Prime Minister Narendra Modi before it moves ahead with its affidavit suggesting an alternative route for the controversial Sethusamudram project.
The Supreme Court had directed the government to submit an affidavit suggesting alternative alignment for the Sethusamudram project without cutting the 'Ram Sethu' and asked Centre whether the latter could be declared a national monument.
"I have done an aerial survey of the Sethusamudaram project. I understand all the 4-5 alignments which were available, now we have researched different alternatives on that basis we are making up our mind," Shipping Minister Nitin Gadkari told reporters here.
"After the approval of the Prime Minister, we will submit our affidavit to the Supreme Court about the decision on Ram Sethu," he added.
Gadkari has time and again said that there was no question of demolishing the Ram Sethu - a mythical bridge built by Lord Rama to reach Lanka.
The project, which envisages dredging a ship channel across Palk Strait and providing a shorter navigational route for ships from east and west coasts of the country instead of circumventing Sri Lanka, hit a roadblock after protests over the proposed demolition of Ram Sethu.
The Tamil Nadu government has opposed the project on the ground that it would affect the livelihood of fishermen. The coastal movement due to this proposed project is likely to improve and there would be development in maritime trade as well.