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No takers for sea link toll contract

india Updated: Feb 12, 2009 01:09 IST
Zeeshan Shaikh
Zeeshan Shaikh
Hindustan Times
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A toll of Rs 45 for a car may have been proposed on the Bandra-Worli Sea Link (BWSL), but there does not seem to be anybody interested in taking up the collection contract.

The Maharashtra State Road Development Corpora-tion (MSRDC) had invited bids in October from parties interested in taking up toll collection on the sea link.

The MSRDC has already extended the last date for submission of bids five times.

Toll collection agencies are said to be staying away from the contract since it is temporary. “The collection period is only going to be five to six months. It makes it difficult to take such a huge risk for such a short term when you do not even know how many vehicles will ply on the bridge,” said a toll collection agency official, requesting anonymity for lack of authorisation to speak to the press.

Earlier, the MSRDC plan was to make the contractor who gets the right to lay the Worli-Haji Ali Sea Link to buy out the BWSL and collect toll.

But with the BWSL set to thrown open on May 1 and no announcement on who will be allowed to build the Worli-Haji Ali link yet, the MSRDC has been forced to look for a stop-gap arrangement.

The MSRDC had invited the bids in October with the projection that toll collection every year would amount to Rs 74 crore. MSRDC officials denied there was a problem.

“Bid dates were extended for some reasons,” MSRDC Chief Engineer Subhash Nage said. “We are hopeful we will be able to hand over the contract to some agency by March.”