News headlines

Press Trust of India

Mumbai, Jun 18: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh is expected to visit the city on June 21 to lay the foundation stone of the Phase-I of the Mumbai Metro Rail Project.

"We have received a tentative programme for the prime minister's visit for June 21," Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) commissioner T Chandrashekhar told PTI here today.

However, a final programme is yet to be received, he said.

The state government on May 18 had approved Phase-I of the Rs 19,500 crore worth Mumbai Metro Rail Project, which is set to redefine the lifeline of the metropolis.

The consortium led by Reliance Energy Ltd (REL) and MMRDA had bagged the contract for the Rs 2356 Phase I and first corridor --- the 11-km long Versova-Andheri-Ghatkopar route --- is expected to go in full swing by October.

"We would start the ground work soon after the foundation is laid," the MMRDA commissioner said.

After a long drawn stalemate over the high viability gap funding (VGF) between the consortium and the government, REL decided to drastically cut their viability gap funding from Rs 1251 crore to Rs 650 crore and thus bagging the contract.

The Rs 650 crore VGF would be met through Union and state government resources, he said.

A Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV), consisting of REL and MMRDA, would execute the project. Phase-I is likely to be completed by 2009.


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