A fresh funding dispute between the Centre and Delhi government has put another roadblock in the expansion plan of Delhi Metro's Phase 4. The project was finally approved by the Union Cabinet on March 7, after a long wait of 2 years before hitting this obstruction.
Delhi Transport Minister Kailash Gahlot, on March 20, directed his department to tell the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) not to start working on Phase 4 until it got further clarifications on the project's funding, reported Hindustan Times. The objection raised by Gahlot stated that the share of expenditure of the state government had increased by 30.86% for the construction of three corridors by 2024 after it received approval from the Union Cabinet.
"The matter was brought to my notice when DMRC wrote to the Delhi government seeking Rs 200 crore to start initial works on the project. As per DMRC's new funding plan, after the Centre cleared the three routes, the share of Delhi government increased to Rs 7,844.70 crore from Rs 5,994.50 crore that was earlier approved by the state cabinet for the same lines", the daily quoted Gahlot as saying.
The Delhi Cabinet had approved the construction of all 6 corridors of Phase 4 in December, last year.
DMRC refused to comment on the matter. However, a metro official was quoted by the daily saying that the designing work for Phase 4 has started, "The preparation of drawings, including structural drawings will take up to three months. The process of finalising and floating tenders can only start after the drawings are prepared".
The initial deadline for the completion of Phase 4 project was 2022. However, it has now been extended to December 31, 2024.
(Edited by: Nehal Solanki)
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