Work on the ambitious Kochi metro rail will now speed ahead with the allocation of Rs.150 crore for the project in the State Budget 2012-13.
The State government appears to have taken a cue from the Centre's decision to earmark Rs.60 crore in the Union Budget for Kochi metro by announcing in the State budget that “work on Kochi metro will begin next year.”
Expressing happiness over the State government's support for the project, Delhi Metro Rail Corporation's (consultants and executing agency for the project) Kochi project director P. Sriram told The Hindu that the corporation had requested the State government and the Centre to allocate Rs.150 crore each in 2012-13.
He said that DMRC would be able to carry out the construction of the coach repair yard at Muttom, near Aluva, set up stations for the Kochi metro and order new coaches using the assistance from the governments.
The State government had earmarked Rs.156 crore in the previous budget for the rail overbridges and roads ahead of the implementation of the Kochi metro rail project.
Mr. Sriram said the DMRC had so far received about Rs.38 crore for preparatory work.
The Kochi metro rail project is estimated to cost over Rs.5,400 crore.
The State government wants the project to be implemented as a Centre-State joint venture, despite the Planning Commission preferring private participation.