Barely two days after the Telangana government declared that L&T Metro Rail (Hyderabad) Ltd agreed to make three specific changes in the alignment of the project as sought by it, Chief Executive of the concessionaire company V.B. Gadgil said the firm is yet to receive a formal communication in this regard.
Speaking to presspersons on the sidelines of a meeting organised by Hyderabad Management Association here on Monday, he denied that the company has agreed to any alignment changes and the State government was yet to formally communicate the changes it wanted.
At the meeting on Saturday that Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao had with senior executives of L&T led by its chairman A.M. Naik, there, however, were requests to the company to put the work on hold in certain areas. Any decision, Mr. Gadgil added, could be taken only on receipt of a formal communication and the specific changes in the alignment the State government wanted.
Stating it was not impossible to make changes to the alignment, Mr. Gadgil explained that ultimately everything depended on whether they were technically feasible. Unlike in road projects, changes to the alignment to rail network under construction were not easy, particularly with regard to curves. The State government, he added, would also have to bear any additional cost as a result of the changes.
Later, a spokesperson of L&T Metro Rail (Hyderabad) said even prior to the meeting the company has been maintaining that since there is a binding concession agreement any changes has to be formally communicated and “accordingly we will respond.” At Saturday’s meeting, the government conveyed its desire to see changes to the alignment, “we neither said yes or no.”
On the November 20 meeting where the State government said the changes were to be finalised, he said a meeting of the Prime Minister Project Monitoring Group is scheduled on that day. Since Hyderabad Metro Rail is also part of projects monitored directly by the PMO, the discussions were to take stock of the progress. The issue of the changes sought is unlikely to figure in that meeting, even if the company by then receives a formal communication from the State government. Any response to such requests could be only given after getting a feedback from the engineering team, he added.