BENGALURU: Bengaluru Development Minister K G George has said the `100 crore announced in the state budget for the Suburban Rail has been allocated for implementing the modified version of the project agreed upon by the state and Centre recently.
“The chief minister has given his consent for the proposed Phase-I of Suburban Rail which will link Mandya and Kengeri, Whitefield and Baiyappanahalli and Tumkur and Yeshvantpur. The `100 crore released now is an initial payment for Phase-I,” George told Express.
The cost of the project, slated to be `1,000 crore, will be equally shared by the Centre and state governments as decided earlier.
“Once work begins, the state will release the remaining `400 crore of its share,” the minister said, adding that since the Centre has already agreed on its share, getting funds from it will not be a problem.
When asked when the work will commence, he said, “We plan to have a meeting between Railways, RITES and Department of Urban Land Transport immediately after the budget session concludes on March 31. There is much paper work and preliminary task to be carried out. We also need to get the project sanctioned from the Centre.”
On the deadline for the 160-km project, George said a few more meetings need to be held with various departments before the deadline can be set.
Meanwhile, Railway sources said it could take up to late 2017 or early 2018 for the project to commence as infrastructure needs to be upgraded at these stations.
Mono-rail Being Explored
George said a Malaysian company has recently approached the state government and expressed its willingness to prepare a preliminary report of a mono-rail project for the city.
“We are looking at the mono-rail to serve as a feeder service to the Metro. We cannot congest the roads by running buses as a feeder to Metro and are seriously exploring the possibility,” he added.
It is only at an initial stage and details can be shared when they prepare a Detailed Project Report later, the minister said.