Mumbai Rail Vikas Corporation (MRVC), the government body responsible for executing railway projects in the city, has blamed the state government for delaying the completion of the 12-car Harbour line project by six months, from June 2014 to December 2014.
Both the state government and the railways are supposed to share a 50:50 ratio in this Rs714 crore project that involves platform extension, overhead wiring and electrical work. However, the MRVC has not processed the work because the state government has not issued a letter assuring them of their share in the project.
“We are not demanding immediate funds, but the state should at least assure us fund availability. We have been talking to state authorities but they have shown little response,” said a railway official requesting anonymity.
For over 10 lakh commuters on the Harbour line, the delay means their ordeal of travelling in over-crowded 9-car trains will last for another two years. “We are ready with the paper work; and will begin as soon as the state government assures us in writing that they will award us our share of the money,” said Ravi Agarwal, executive director (Planning).
Repeated calls and SMSes to Manukumar Srivastava, principal secretary of the Urban Development, remained unanswered. Another senior railway official said the administration has lost crucial construction work from October to December owing to the delay from the state government. “If the work has not commenced in these months there are chances it will get further delayed because of next year’s monsoon.”
The platform between CST-Mankhrud and Wadala to Andheri will be extended for running 12-car rakes, the platform beyond Vashi are already of 12-car.
“The construction required for a 12-car or 10-car platform extension will be the same, so we are looking forward to a 12-car extension instead of repeating similar amount of work again,” added the MRVC official.