In a move that will take Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s dream project of a Mumbai-Ahmedabad bullet train a step closer to reality, the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) has agreed to give land at the Bandra-Kurla Complex for the first terminus.
A senior bureaucrat, who requested anonymity, said that in a meeting earlier this week, Maharashtra chief minister Devendra Fadnavis ordered the MMRDA to allot 40,000 sq metres land for the purpose.
Earlier, MMRDA had opposed the proposal as it wanted to use the land for the proposed International Financial Services Centre (IFSC) at BKC. The state Urban Development Department had asked the Railway Ministry to explore alternatives near Bandra Terminus and Kurla.
“We have given our comments to the state government. So the government will take the final call and convey it to the Central Government,” said UPS Madan, metropolitan commissioner, MMRDA. Sources said MMRDA had raised concerns about losing out on revenue that the IFSC would bring in if the land was allotted for the bullet train terminus.
According to Madan, the underground terminus in BKC will allow construction of the proposed IFSC on MMRDA’s earmarked plot. “The station is planned to be built under the road, so the rest of the land is available for IFSC construction,” he said.
The total cost of the bullet train project is Rs99,000 crore and Maharashtra and Gujarat will share 25% each for the project. The remaining 50% will be borne by the Central government. There are a total of 12 stations on the 508-km route — four of which are in Maharashtra and eight in Gujarat.
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