Maharashtra government derails MMRDA’s plans to raise funds for Metro

[] In a move that may delay Mumbai’s DN Nagar-Dahisar and Andheri east-Dahisar east metro lines, the Maharashtra government has expressed its unwillingness to become a guarantor for the MMRDA’s plans to raise funds from international agencies for the rolling stock

In a major embarrassment to city’s town planning authority, the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA), the Maharashtra government has not agreed to become a guarantor for its plans to raise funds from international agencies, for the rolling stock for the DN Nagar-Dahisar and Andheri east-Dahisar east metro lines. The rolling stock includes not only trains, but also tracks and signalling systems, among others.

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The civil work on both the lines have already commenced but if the rolling stock is not available then it would be difficult to complete the project on time. “We want to raise funds to the tune of Rs 5,000 crores for rolling stock, for both the projects, from international agencies. We had approached the state government to become a guarantor but it has not yet agreed for the same,” an official from the MMRDA said. Banks are ready to provide loans directly to the MMRDA but the union government’s regulations do not allow a direct borrowing, the official said.

According to the official, the Department of Economic Affairs (DEA) has been approached, to make amendments in the regulations, so that funds can be borrowed directly without the Maharashtra government’s support as a guarantor. The borrowing is likely to come from the Asian Development Bank.

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As per the schedule, the bids for buying rolling stocks should have been floated by now but it hasn’t been done due to want of funds, as the debt-ridden state government doesn’t want an additional liability. The civil works for Metro 2A and Metro 7 routes are expected to be completed by early 2018. The Dahisar-DN Nagar Metro 2A is planned to be 18.5 kms with 17 stations, at an estimated cost of Rs 6,410 crores. The Dahisar east-Andheri east Metro 7 will be 16.5 kms long with 16 stations and the estimated price has been pegged at Rs 6,208 crores.

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Category: Lifestyle

Debora Berti

Università degli Studi di Firenze, IT

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