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Tuesday, Dec 10, 2019

No coaches, no staff: Pune metro trial stretch in doldrums, allege activists

PM Modi has set deadline of December-end 2019 to make priority stretch functional

pune Updated: Nov 17, 2019 16:09 IST
Steffy Thevar
Steffy Thevar
Hindustan Times, Pune
Metro work in progress at Vallabhnagar, in Pimpri. At least 30 per cent work for Reach I and 40 per cent work for Reach II is still pending, according to officials.
Metro work in progress at Vallabhnagar, in Pimpri. At least 30 per cent work for Reach I and 40 per cent work for Reach II is still pending, according to officials.(HT/PHOTO)
         

As per city activists, the Pune metro priority stretch trial is likely to miss its December deadline this year, which was set by Prime Minister Narendra Modi during the groundbreaking ceremony of the third line between Reach III Hinjewadi and Shivajinagar, last year in December. Activists allege that as the coaches for the metro are yet to arrive from Nagpur and the recruitment for the operation and maintenance staff is also pending, it is unlikely that the stretch will be operational in one month’s time.

However, reiterating the claim made by the PM, Maharashtra Metro Rail Corporation Limited (Maha-Metro) officials said that the priority route of Reach I from Vanaz depot to Garware college and Reach II from Pimpri to Phugewadi on Nigidi to Swargate line will start by December-end for passengers to use.

At a press conference on Friday, Maha-Metro officials said that the priority route of Reach I from Vanaz depot to Garware college and Reach II from Pimpri to Phugewadi will start by December-end and that the passengers will be able to use it. The officials, however, also said that the coaches for the metro train are yet to arrive and will take a week to come from Nagpur to Pune whenever the contractor sends it across.

Despite the officials claiming that most of the civil works is done, without the coaches and the staff, the metro cannot run, say activists. Officials claim that the extended monsoon has delayed the project a little. While the wider roads in the Pimpri Chinchwad Municipal Corporation (PCMC) helped move the project faster, the encroachments on the Paud phata stretch delayed the work in Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) for the Reach II priority stretch.

The Reach I priority stretch is seven kilometres while the Reach II priority stretch is five kilometres. About 5.7 km of stretch for the Reach I section has been laid, but only 200 metres stretch for the Reach II section has been laid.

Hemant Sonawane, general manager, public relations at Maha-Metro, said, “We have planned to meet our target of December for the priority stretch and we are moving in that direction. We are sure that we will be able to meet the desired target.”

Activist Tushar Shinde, chief convener, Pimpri-Chinchwad Citizen Forum, said, “The metro will not be able to meet its deadline and it is disheartening to see that they could not plan it properly. The core purpose of having a metro through PCMC and PMC is to increase connectivity, but that will not happen until the end to end stations are connected. Why will I as a citizen quit using my private vehicle if the metro does not fulfil those needs?”

Tough task ahead for Maha-Metro

Claim by Maha-Metro

Maha-Metro officials say that the priority route on both the stretches, Reach I (PCMC to Range Hills) and Reach II (civil court to Vanaz) will be ready by December-end this year.

Pending work

The couches from Nagpur are yet to arrive and the recruitment for the operation and management staff is also pending

30% work for the priority route in Reach I

40% work for on Reach II

Progress report of Reach-I priority progress (PCMC to Phugewadi)

Descriptions/activity/ Scope/ Work complete till November 14, 2019/ Balance

Foundations/ Pile cap/ 283/ 283/ 0

Pile /671/ 671/0

Pier/ 283/ 274/ 9

Pier cap/ 259/ 192/ 67

Portal beam/ 12/12/ 0

Segment casting/ 2,365/ 2,044/ 321

Span erection/ 259/ 168/ 91

Concourse+ PD pier arm/ 70/ 51/ 19

Platform pier arm/ 60 /19/ 41