Differences with NHAI on road widening for projects

A high-level committee has been set up by the Union Ministry of Transport and Highways to sort out issues between the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) and Kochi Metro Rail Ltd. and Kerala Monorail Corporation Ltd.

The setting up of the committee was communicated by Union Minister for Transport and Highways Oscar Fernandes to Minister for Public Works V.K. Ebrahim Kunju during the latter’s visit to New Delhi.

The NHAI is insisting on a 38-metre six-lane track on the Aluva-Edappally NH-47 stretch. But, waiting for widening of the stretch will upset the schedule of the Kochi Metro.

Visit to Kochi

The committee will visit Kochi to sort the issues, official sources told The Hindu.

The NHAI has already given the nod to Kochi Metro to go ahead with the work following the intervention of Principal Adviser to the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation E. Sreedharan.

As much as 1.5 metres of road is being widened on both sides to avoid any delay, the sources said.

After the assignment in Kochi, the committee has been asked to look into the issues with the KMCL for the monorail projects in Thiruvananthapuram and Kozhikode.

Meanwhile, the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC), the general consultant for KMCL, the special purpose vehicle (SPV) set up to execute the project in the two cities, has decided to stick to the time schedule.

EoI submission

At the pre-expression of interest (EoI) conference to select the exclusive developer-contractor for the Rs.5,581-crore elevated mass rapid transit system (MRTS) in Thiruvananthapuram and Kozhikode, the participating firms had demanded extension of the date for submitting the EoI.

Mr. Sreedharan made it clear that the last date for submission of the EoI was October 1, and it would be opened the same day. Technical and financial bids would be invited only from those pre-qualified through the global EoI.

Firms specialising in MRTS from the U.K., Japan, Malaysia, Korea, and China have evinced interest in the EoI.

The two-stage tender process to be initiated after October includes Request for Qualification (RFQ) and Request for Proposal (RFP).

Official sources said the tenders were being floated to select the companies to design, set up, operate, and maintain the project, apart from mobilising funds either through supplier credit or bilateral funding.

More In: Kochi | Kerala | National