Mumbai: Even after 25 days, CM Eknath Shinde has yet to expand his cabinet in the wake of a mad rush for ministerial berths and also because of ongoing legal and legislative battle, he has decided to personally keep an eye on the development of a slew of infrastructure projects of over Rs 10 lakh crore being proposed in Mumbai Metropolitan Region and rest of Maharashtra. This is for the first time the Chief Minister’s Office (CMO) will be coordinating and driving the development of infrastructure projects to avoid procedural delay and red tapism and facilitate timely coordination and cooperation of various departments and agencies for the project completion. These projects are being implemented by the urban development department and public works department and various agencies including the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development, Maharashtra State Road Development Corporation and City and Industrial Development Corporation.
Shinde, who is expected to keep with him urban development and MSRDC, has already told the administration that he will personally review the progress of various infrastructure projects including Mumbai Ahmedabad Bullet train, Mumbai Nagpur Samruddhi Marg, Mumbai Metro rail corridors, Mumbai Trans Harbour Link, Mumbai Coastal Road, Navi Mumbai airport, Thane coastal road, Konkan coastal road, elevated roads and expansion of Mumbai Pune expressway. Shinde hopes that the infrastructure development will help state to become a trillion dollar economy.
A senior bureaucrat told the Free Press Journal, ‘’There are multiple departments and agencies involved in the implementation of a large number of infrastructure projects. CM will personally hold periodical reviews to put on fast track development of these projects to avoid time and cost escalation. CM will soon appoint a principal advisor for an hassle-free implementation of infrastructure projects in the state.’’ He said that CM has recently announced that the Nagpur to Shirdi stretch of the Hindu Hriday Samrat Balasaheb Thackeray Mumbai Nagpur Samruddhi Marg will be inaugurated on August 15.
He referred to the CM’s recent intervention to provide all clearances for the Rs 1.1 lakh crore Mumbai Ahmedabad Bullet Train project which has paved the way for the National High Speed Rail Corporation to invite bids for the design and construction of underground terminal and tunnel in the Bandra Kurla Complex. The tender issued earlier had to be scrapped as the Maha Vikas Aghadi government did not hand over the land in BKC.
CM’s decision to supervise infrastructure project development came days after the cabinet held on July 16 approved Rs 60,000 crore loan to be raised by the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority. Besides, the cabinet gave nod for providing government guarantee and waiver in stamp duty payable on loan agreements between MMRDA and banks/financial institutions.