E. Sreedharan, Principal Adviser to the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC), has said that he will not be a part of the Kochi Metro Rail project if the DMRC is not involved in its execution.

Mr. Sreedharan was speaking to mediapersons after meeting Union Minister of State for Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution K.V. Thomas in New Delhi on Wednesday. The meeting comes in the wake of the State government’s efforts to get the services of the DMRC for executing the Kochi Metro Rail project.

Mr. Sreedharan said the DMRC as such was not against taking up the work. The opposition to taking up the project had come from the DMRC director board.

At the meeting, Mr. Sreedharan pointed out the advantages if the Kochi project was handed over to the DMRC. The project can be kicked off in four months and commissioned in three years.

Talks with Kamal Nath

Mr. Sreedharan said handing over the execution of the project to the DMRC would not be a hindrance to getting loans from the Japan International Cooperation Agency. The DMRC has already completed the steps for global tender, plan, and design.

Prof. Thomas said he would hold discussion with Union Minister for Urban Development Kamal Nath and request him to entrust the work to the DMRC. If needed, Prof. Thomas said, a joint meeting will be held when Chief Minister Oommen Chandy visits Delhi.

The Minister said he had briefed Prime Minister Manmohan Singh about the hurdles being faced by the project. The issue of entrusting the work to the same firm that did the consultancy can be solved only through the discussion with Mr. Kamal Nath.