NHSRCL displays a replica of the bullet train during the Magnetic Maharashtra summit at BKC in 2018. (Pramod Thakur/HT Photo)
NHSRCL displays a replica of the bullet train during the Magnetic Maharashtra summit at BKC in 2018. (Pramod Thakur/HT Photo)

Bullet train: NHSRCL calls for final bids for BKC station in Mumbai

Maharashtra CM Uddhav Thackeray had earlier questioned if the bullet train project was of any benefit to the state
By Aroosa Ahmed
PUBLISHED ON JAN 26, 2021 12:35 AM IST

Despite opposition from the Uddhav Thackeray-led Maharashtra Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government, the Centre has decided to go ahead with construction of the underground bullet train terminal at Bandra-Kurla Complex (BKC).

BKC will be the first station on the 508-km railway corridor between Mumbai and Ahmedabad. On Monday, the National High Speed Rail Corporation Limited (NHSRCL) – an entity formed by the railway ministry for the project – invited the final bids for the construction of BKC station by February 19.

The tender for the construction of the station was floated in 2019. Seven Indian companies – Larsen & Turbo Limited, ITD Cementation India Limited, J Kumar Infra Projects Limited, Tata Projects Limited, Afcons Infrastructure Limited, Hindustan Construction Company Limited and Ircon International Limited – have shown interest in the construction of the underground BKC bullet train station in a pre-bid meeting last week.

“Due to the Covid-19 lockdown, a lot of the work could not be done in 2020,” said a senior NHSRCL official.

The underground BKC terminus is proposed to have three floors. The first floor of the building will be used for the station administration and storing equipment required for the operation of the bullet train. The second floor, according to the design, will consist of a food court, shops and ticket counter, while the third floor will have six bullet train platforms.

Chief minister Uddhav Thackeray had earlier questioned if the bullet train project was of any benefit to the state. The MVA government has been non-committal on the bullet train project following its tussle with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led government at the Centre.

While the previous BJP state government had handed over the plot in BKC to NHSRCL, the MVA government was considering the BKC plot to build the Metro-3 car shed, following the controversy over the Kanjurmarg land and as an alternative to Aarey Colony plot. However, experts did not consider the BKC plot a feasible option for the car shed.

Despite repeated attempts, state urban development minister Eknath Shinde and transport minister Anil Parab did not respond to HT’s calls.

NHSRCL has signed the contract agreement for design and construction of 88km of viaducts between Vadodara and Ahmedabad in Gujarat. It has also awarded civil contracts for the construction of 92% of the high-speed railway project alignment in Gujarat.

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