‘They are interested in constructing it in Bangalore, Mangalore, Hubli–Dharwad’

Several firms, particularly from Malaysia, have evinced interest in developing a monorail in Bangalore, Mangalore and Hubli–Dharwad, Minister of State for Infrastructure Development and Information Santosh Lad has said.

First round of talks

Speaking to presspersons here on Tuesday, he said several firms, through their consultants, had held the first round of talks with the government. The estimated cost of constructing an elevated monorail ranged from Rs. 100 crore to Rs. 120 crore.

The traffic situation in Bangalore could be eased by constructing a monorail, which could serve as a feeder service for the metro, Mr. Lad said. He said that details pertaining to outlay for the project, invitation of expression of interest and land acquisition would be known only in the next couple of weeks. The firms had proposed developing a 20- to 25-km monorail in Hubli–Dharwad and 30-to 35-km monorail in Bangalore in the first phase.

“We told foreign firms to visit Belgaum and other tier II cities also to explore opportunities for the construction of a monorail,” Mr. Lad said.

To a question on the delay in completion of railway projects in the State, Mr. Lad said that of 14 projects, only two had been completed so far. Land acquisition and escalation of costs were the major reasons for the delay, he said.

Intervention sought

The Minister said that he had written to Union Railway Minister M. Mallikarjun Kharge seeking his intervention to expedite the work.

He added that development of infrastructure in city corporation limits would be possible only by levying cess on residents in these limits.

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