Mumbai Metro ride is going to be an expensive one


By Ateeq Shaikh

Believe it or not. The price of Mumbai’s first metro rail between Versova Andheri Ghatkopar being constructed by Reliance Infrastructure led Mumbai Metro One Private Limited (MMOPL) has shot up by 84 per cent.

Project cost at the launch of construction of this 11-km long route was Rs2,356 crore, but now it stands at Rs4,321 crore. “Not only has the project cost substantially increased but also bogged by inordinate  delays,” said Anil Galgali, RTI activist who received a reply under the Right to Information from the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA).

The first phase of Mumbai Metro rail project was inaugurated by prime minister Manmohan Singh in June 2006 and construction began in February 2008.

Due to an increase in construction cost and also purchasing extra rakes with an expectation of high ridership, MMOPL has approached the state government as well as the MMRDA seeking revision in  ticket rates.

The present fares are Rs6 up to the first three km, Rs8 between three to eight km and Rs10 for over eight km. The demand now is to increase the fares up to Rs35.

Sources informed that the subject of fare hike will not be touched for the time being by the state government.

Meanwhile, the first line has hit yet another change in completion schedule from September to year end or early next year as Commissioner of Railway Safety is yet to certify the project.