While Bandra (West) residents and their local representatives met the highest state authority to press for their demand to get the National College metro station relocated, the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) is still examining their alternatives. The station is one of the 23 along the 2B line that connects DN Nagar in Andheri (West) and Mandale in Mankhurd.
The residents and members of the Varde Marg Residents Association in Bandra West claim that MMRDA officials “discreetly” moved the metro station from its earlier location close to the RD & SH National College towards the junction of SV Road-Turner Road-Linking Road, close to Sadhu Vaswani Garden. This was done without taking them into confidence. Secondly, they are seeking a feasibility report on the basis of which the decision to shift the metro station was taken. Another point they put across is a part of Sadhu Vaswani Garden getting impacted.
On the other hand, sources within the MMRDA said the decision was not discreet and was taken in 2020 on engineering and technical grounds as the earlier site had certain challenges. Officials also shared that it is not possible to relocate the metro station to its original location due to the sewage treatment plant shaft that would cause issues while building station pillars. Construction at the new spot commenced a few months back and a lot of planning has already gone into its execution. “At this point, the decision to move the station back cannot be taken immediately,” sources shared.
“We are examining how the station can be moved to its earlier planned location. It entails an additional cost to the project and other engineering challenges,” an official said to The Free Press Journal.
Meanwhile, Bandra (West) MLA Ashish Shelar, after a joint meeting with Chief Minister Eknath Shinde and MMRDA Commissioner SVR Srinivas, announced that the station will be re-shifted to the original location. “Informed the local residents that their demand regarding National College metro station has been conveyed to CM Eknath Shindeji who has assured positive a resolution at the earliest,” he tweeted after meeting residents on Sunday. In another tweet, he said that the CM has accepted the demand.
Reacting to the tweets, Twitter user Mehfooz Shaikh shared, “This shows that the MLA only works for some communities. The new site is better than the previous one… The focus should be on saving Sadhu Vaswani Garden and not on entirely relocating the station."
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