Maharashtra’s push for bullet train: BKC land for underground terminus to be handed over to NHSRCL

State govt to make fresh appeal to the Centre to hand over land for Metro 6 car shed at Kanjurmarg

Sanjay JogUpdated: Friday, July 08, 2022, 12:41 PM IST
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Maharashtra CM Eknath Shinde, left, and Deputy CM Devendra Fadnavis | PTI

Mumbai: After the Shinde-Fadnavis government’s decision to revoke the Maha Vikas Aghadi government’s decision of development of Metro car shed in Aarey Colony for Colaba-SEEPZ Metro 3, the government will soon take a decision on handing over of the 4.2 hectares in Bandra Kurla Complex for the construction of a terminal for the Rs 1.1 lakh crore Mumbai-Ahmedabad Bullet train.

A senior officer, who is privy to the developments, told the Free Press Journal, ‘’For the construction work to begin, Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) needs to shift the petrol pump of the state-run oil marketing company. This issue has been resolved. Besides, there is a need for the shifting of the COVID-19 care facility which is currently housed on the land. The cabinet will soon take the necessary decisions and direct the MMRDA to complete the due procedures for handing over the land.’’

The officer admitted that during the previous government there was negligible movement although the land acquisition for the bullet train in other parts of Maharashtra was undertaken. ‘’The National High Speed Rail Corporation Ltd (NHSRCL) had to cancel the tender issued in November 2019 for the construction of an underground terminus for the bullet train project in BKC as the state government did not hand over the land. The state government had given its approval for handing over the land in February 2018 but it was not done despite reminders from the NHSRCL. However, the new government is quite keen to hand over the land and thereby give a much-needed push for the completion of the bullet train project,’’ he said.

The BKC is the starting point of this 508-km long high-speed rail line and the tunnels till Shilphata will be more than 21-km-long, thus forming a vital component of India’s first Bullet Train project connecting the two cities. Land acquisition has been a big issue for this project, especially in Maharashtra. Around 62 per cent of the land has been acquired in the state; against this, in Gujarat, more than 98 per cent of the land has been acquired and all five civil packages have been awarded. Out of the total 508 km length of the Mumbai-Ahmedabad High-Speed Rail Project, 348 km lies in Gujarat, 4 km in Dadra and Nagar Haveli and the balance 156 km is in Maharashtra.

Meanwhile, the Shinde-Fadnavis government will make a fresh appeal to the BJP-led government at the Centre to hand over the Kanjurmarg land for the Metro 6 corridor especially when it has taken a decision to develop a car shed for Metro 3 in Aarey Colony.The government is optimistic about the positive decision in this regard.

The state government had earlier planned to build an integrated car depot at Kanjurmarg for line 3, 4 (Wadala-Thane-Kasarvadavali) and line 6 (Swami Samarth Nagar-Vikhroli).

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