Mumbai(dna): State chief minister Devendra Fadnavis on Wednesday met senior railway officials including Western Railway general manager GC Agarwal, Central Railway general manager SK Sood, Mumbai Rail Vikas Corporation managing director Prabhat Sahai and South Central general manager Satyendra Kumar to take stock of various big-ticket railway projects. The most visible outcome was the creation of a state railway development company the founding formalities of which would be completed in three months time.
Among the projects discussed was the Rs 2826 crore Ahmedanagar-Beed-Parli new corridor which the government wants to complete by March 2019. As reported earlier by dna, the railways has already set out tenders of almost Rs 300 crores for the project which the state government is banking on in a big way to clear its electoral prospects in drought-hit Marathwada. The state government also assured the railways that the land acquisition for the Wardha-Yavatmal-Nanded line will be completed by July 2016. The line will be a connector between Vidarbha- from where chief minister Fadnavis hails- and Marathwada.
The meeting also stressed on the fact that the Virara-Vasai-Diva-Panvel suburban corridor, expected to cost upwards of Rs 10000 crores at current prices, should be speeded up and should be included in the next railway budget for the financial year 2016-17.
Another big-ticket project is to speed up construction of the Maharashtra leg of the Western Dedicated Freight Corridor with the intention to start physical construction from December 2015 and complete the project by March 2019.
A long-pending plan, to connect Bandra Terminus and the Western Express Highway, was also discussed. This has been a long-time demand of Western Railway and a couple of years ago the construction department of WR and the Maharashtra State Road Development Corporation (MSRDC) had discussed three options.
The high-power meet also dicussed ways to bring about uniformity in various infrastructure plans so that the construction of the Navi Mumbai airport as well as the elevated CST-panvel corridor could be done in tandem.