Decks cleared for phase II of Chennai Metro

Centre revokes condition that makes ‘Made in India’ trains mandatory

Published - December 11, 2018 01:21 am IST - CHENNAI

The decks have been cleared for the phase II project of Chennai Metro, as the Ministry of Urban Development (MoUD) said on Monday that ‘Made in India’ trains will not be mandatory.

Highly placed sources told The Hindu that since the loan with the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) for the phase II project demands that major components should come only from Japan, the MoUD has given a go-ahead for this expansion project.

Rider attached

Sometime ago, the MoUD had communicated to the State government that the phase II project of Chennai Metro Rail should have trains made in India. But the JICA loan came with the condition that 30 per cent of the components, including the trains and signalling system, should come from Japan only. Owing to this, the phase II project had hit a roadblock. But on Monday, the condition was revoked, sources said. “We received a communication that [this condition] can be done away with. We have already had discussions with JICA and everything has been finalised; now, it is just a formality to get their sanction. It will be over in no time,” a source said.

The phase II project estimated to be built with about ₹80,000 crore will sprawl over 108 km of the city with 116 stations. At first, nearly 50 km of the 108 km will be constructed and this will cost Chennai Metro Rail ₹44,000 crore. JICA will extend a significant portion of this amount as a loan with an extremely low interest rate and a long payback period as well, sources added.

The 50-km route, which will be built first includes Madhavaram to CMBT and Madhavaram to Shollinganallur having 58 stations. Both these stretches will be partially elevated and underground.

The land acquisition process has ready begun and CMRL plans to acquire nearly 800 properties across the city for constructing the whole project. Also, they are been carrying out soil tests in many parts of the city such as Nungambakkam, Ayanavaram, Thirumangalam, OMR and Cathedral Road.

Minister for Industries M.C. Sampath reviewed the progress of work from AG-DMS to Washermanpet, which will be opened in January.

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