NEW DELHI: It’ll take around `50,000 crore and four years for the first three corridors of the Regional Rapid Transit System to be in place. The Delhi-Alwar route, that will take two hours to cover, will pass through Gurgaon, Neemrana and Manesar, while the one-hour long Delhi-Meerut route will go through Ghaziabad. It will cover Delhi-Panipat (via Kashmere Gate-ISBT, Narela and Sonepat) in an hour, travelling at 160 km per hour. It will be integrated with existing Delhi Metro stations.
The alignment and identification of routes and stations has been done, but the process of acquiring clearances is to begin. A feasibility report by the Urban Mass Transit Company (UMTC) and the Delhi Integrated Multi-Modal Transit System (DIMTS) has been submitted. The project still has to get clearance from Railways, the state governments of Delhi, Rajasthan, UP and Haryana, and the Cabinet. “The idea is to decongest Delhi through better and faster transport links to neighbouring cities.
At present it takes around an hour to travel from Gurgaon to Connaught Place. The new trains will allow a person in Meerut to commute to Delhi in the same time. “We want to encourage people to take the train, and take more private vehicles off the road,” said S K Lohia, OSD-Urban Transport, Urban Development ministry. The National Capital Region Planning Board (NCRPB) is coordinating the project. The concerned states signed an MoU to set up a transport corporation for the new network, but it’s nowhere in sight. Four states will have 12.5 per cent equity each in the corporation, and the Centre will have the rest. However, the funding for the project is still to be decided.
A source in the NCRPB has admitted that very little has happened after the MoU was signed in June 2011. Though a good project, the rapid rail seems to be plodding along, meandering through clearances, land acquisitions, etc.