No mention of metro projects dashes AP hope

In the new scenario AMRC is mulling Public Private Partnership to put the metro service in Vijayawada on course.

Published: 02nd February 2018 01:53 AM  |   Last Updated: 02nd February 2018 06:14 AM   |  A+A-

By Express News Service

VIJAYAWADA:   Even as Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu, in his meeting with Prime Minister Narendra Modi last month, made appeals for faster completion of Vijayawada and Visakhapatnam metro rail projects, the Union Budget did not make any mention of the projects, much to the disappointment of the State government. With this, the Amaravati Metro Rail Corporation (AMRC) is contemplating to go for Public Private Partnership (PPP), to execute the Vijayawada metro project.

“Since there has been no assurance regarding the funding of the projects, we will examine if we can go ahead with PPP model for Vijayawada metro,” AMRC MD NP Ramakrishna Reddy told TNIE. The PPP model is being used for the execution of Visakhapatnam metro. Partnering with private players will help in faster execution of the project, as the officials need not wait for the funds by the Union government.

While the Union government had provisionally allocated Rs 100 crore in the previous two budgets, it did not make any allocations in the 2018-19 outlay as the projects are yet to get a green signal from the Union Finance Ministry. For the record, the State government had sent the detailed project report for a metro project in Vijayawada, with an estimated cost of Rs 7,200 crore, about two years ago. However, the project was rejected in March 2017 by the Public Investment Board, which said that the project was financially unviable. It asked the State govt to send a fresh proposal as per the new metro rail policy. 

CM Naidu, in the last quarter of 2017, decided to go ahead with a light metro rail project. Accordingly, the AMRC, in January, selected the French company Systra Group for preparation of the Detailed Project Report (DPR). An agreement between Systra Group and AMRC will be signed next week and the DPR will be ready in six months’ time.

However, what disappointed the State officials more was the fact that the budget proposed allocation of Rs 17,000 crore for a sub-urban transport system in Bengaluru and Rs 40,000 crore for another one in Mumbai. “The Union government may say that we did not send any proposal now, but even when we did before all we got was a paltry Rs 100 crore,” observed a senior official.

What they got, but we didn’tFor others
Budget proposes an outlay of J15,000 crore for various works related to metro rail project extension in Delhi, Chennai, Bengaluru, Ahmedabad, Nagpur and Greater Noida 
Approximately 190 km of metro rail network is proposed to be commissioned for public during 2018-19
Delhi Metro: 114 km, Chennai Metro: 15.5 km, Bangalore Metro: 12.80 km, Ahmedabad Metro: 6.3 km, Nagpur Metro: 11.7 km and Greater Noida : 29.70 km

For us
Despite State’s appeal to Union government for faster completion of Vijayawada and Visakhapatnam metro rail projects, the Union Budget did not make any mention of these  
Union finance minister Arun Jaitley said:
Mumbai’s transport system will be expanded to add 90 km of double line tracks at a cost of over J11,000 cr
150 kms of additional suburban network is being planned in Mumbai at a cost of over J40,000 crore
A suburban network  at a cost of J17,000 cr is being planned for Bengaluru 

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