Maharashtra is exploring the possibilities of tapping Singapore's expertise in water management, budget airport operations, and urban development. This was indicated by Maharashtra Chief Minister Ashok Chavan, who concluded, on Monday, a brief visit here on his way back home from the United States.

American expertise was being sought to train security personnel for the ongoing metro rail and monorail projects of the Mumbai Metropolitan Regional Development Authority (MMRDA), said Mr. Chavan. The training project, for which a memorandum of understanding (MoU) was signed during his visit to the U.S. now, would take off within the next six months. And, the MMRDA's metro rail and monorail projects would be completed in all aspects by the end of 2014. The security-related MoU was signed with a U.S. government entity, while a Malaysian company was building coaches for the MMRDA's rail systems, he said.

On the overall security scene in Mumbai, Maharashtra's specialised anti-terror force was now fully operational, while the Centre had also set up an operational NSG (National Security Guard) unit in Mumbai, said Mr. Chavan.

Expressing satisfaction over his visit to the desalination plant and the water purification and recycling unit in Singapore, Mr. Chavan said: “We are trying to talk to the PUB [Singapore's water agency] about whether we can have a joint venture or whether they can give us a turnkey work” for a possible desalination project in Mumbai. While the idea of such a tie-up was still at a “preliminary stage,” Maharashtra would be interested in water-recycling collaboration as well. His visit to the budget terminal here was to study how the “concept” could be implemented to use the existing airstrips in Maharashtra for better connectivity within and beyond the State.