Metro rail happy with what it has got

In the annual budget, the finance minister has allocated Rs 250 crore subordinate debt for the Delhi Metro.

india Updated: Mar 01, 2006 13:29 IST

Union Finance minister P Chidambaram had some good news for Delhi on Tuesday. In the annual budget, the finance minister has allocated Rs 250 crore subordinate debt for the Delhi Metro. The money will be used to acquire land for Metro's Phase II.

Apart from this, the equity contribution of the Central government and Delhi government stands increased. For Metro's Phase I, the two governments' equity contribution was 14 per cent each of the total cost. This has been increased to 15 per cent for Metro's Phase II.

The budget also provides for a 'Pass Through Assistance' of Rs 482 crore to the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation. This is part of the Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC) loan to the Metro, which is routed by the Central government to the Delhi Metro via the union urban development ministry.

"We are happy with the provisions made for Delhi Metro's Phase II in the budget," said spokesperson Anuj Dayal. In the Phase II, Metro has planned six lines. For this, Metro will acquire 160 hectares of public and private land.

The Rs 250 crore subordinate debt will be utilised to acquire this land. Of the 160 hectares, 155 hectares is government land and the rest owned by private persons. Delhi Metro will have to return the subordinate debt after it services the JBIC loan. "There is also a provision of supplementary grants. Metro can request for such supplementary grants a maximum of three times," said Dayal.

The overall budgetary allocation has come down from last year. The 2005-06 budget had given over Rs 1700 crore to the Delhi Metro. This has been reduced to Rs 732 crore. Metro officials said the reduction is offset by the increase of one per cent in equity of the Central and Delhi government.

First Published: Mar 01, 2006 13:29 IST