‘Apathy by Centre, state stalling work on Mumbai Metro


By Zeeshan Shaikh, Hindustan Times

The indifference by the state and centre towards the long-awaited Metro, which is still awaiting land and clearances to construct the Charkop-Bandra-Mankhurd line, is now forcing the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) to look for alternatives.

After the Centre repeatedly stalled the relaxation of environmental and CRZ laws for the construction of metro train depots at Charkop and Mankhurd, and the unwillingness of the state government to hand over any alternate land in the vicinity, the MMRDA is now contemplating setting up the car depot at Goregaon.

“We are thinking about setting up the car depot at Goregaon near Pahadi village. We will request the state government to help us acquire the land,” a senior MMRDA official said.

The area in Pahadi is close to the Aarey Milk colony, but is privately owned. The MMRDA is planning to ask the state government for help in acquiring this 90-acre piece of land.

The first metro line as per MMRDA’s initial plans should have been functional by 2011. However, frequent delays meant that a concession agreement with Reliance Infrastructure was signed only in January 2010. Work was to begin in January 2011 but was stalled as the Expert Appraisal Committee (EAC) of the MoEF had only cleared the metro line alone without any car depot claiming that it was not permissible under the CRZ notification of 1991. More info