Mumbai: Additional metropolitan commissioner Pravin Darade, in charge of metro projects undertaken by the MMRDA, was transferred to the BMC on Wednesday. He will now be the additional municipal commissioner (AMC) (projects), and will head some of the city’s most important infrastructure projects, including the coastal road.
Sonia Sethi, a 1994 batch Indian Administrative Service officer, will be his successor at the MMRDA. Interestingly, Darade was popularly known as ‘Metro Man’ in his peer group at the MMRDA, for successfully preparing detailed project reports for almost a dozen of the metro corridors that will be running in the Mumbai Metropolitan Region (MMR) and getting it approved from the state cabinet in a short span of time.
These metro lines are — Metro Line 2A, DN Nagar-Mandale (Metro 2B), Wadala-Ghatkopar-Thane-Kasarvadavli (Metro 4), Thane-Bhiwandi-Kalyan (Metro 5), and Dahisar East-Andheri East (Metro 7), Swami Samarth Nagar-Jogeshwari-Vikroli (Metro 6), of which work on a few metro lines has already commenced, while some are in the tendering process.
Speaking on his transfer, Darade said, “I always wanted to complete the metro projects at the earliest, since on an average, there are reports of at least 10-12 deaths of people due to falling out of crowded trains on the suburban railway network every day. Completing the metro line even a day before the set deadline would mean saving those lives.”
Speculation is rife that the current commissioner, Ajoy Mehta, too is likely to be transferred. Sources said since the current chief secretary Dinesh Kumar Jain has been given an extension, Mehta may be posted as additional chief secretary in the home department.
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