Mamata pullout may affect Railway projects in Bengal

When Mamata Banerjee deliberated with party members on whether to withdraw support from the government,a number of her partymen

Written by Avishek G Dastidar | New Delhi | Published:September 20, 2012 3:39 am

When Mamata Banerjee deliberated with party members on whether to withdraw support from the government,a number of her partymen,including a Rajya Sabha MP,said that severing ties with the UPA could jeopardise the railway projects proposed and underway in West Bengal.

As the Railway Minister,Mamata had announced a large number of projects in Bengal,and after her exit from UPA,ministry sources said a number of those projects — still on the planning board — could slow down for lack of a thrust under a new political leadership in the ministry.

Only recently,after pursuing the matter for years,Mamata had got the East-West Metro project in Kolkata — conceived as a joint venture between the Bengal government and the Union Ministry of Urban Development — transferred to the Railways as a majority stakeholder buying the state out. The upwards of Rs 4,800-crore project,which is being part-funded by Japan International Cooperation Agency,now has Railways as a 74 per cent equity holder.

Mamata said on Tuesday that 16 railway factories were to come up in Bengal. Officials said chances of them slowing down cannot be ruled out as till now files related to them were being regularly monitored and pushed by the direct intervention of the Railway ministers (Mamata,Dinesh Trivedi and then Mukul Roy).

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