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Airport Metro: Reliance Infra transfers stake

Reliance Infrastructure has offloaded majority stake and Delhi Metro wants to know why.

Written by Priyanka Sharma | New Delhi | Published: September 11, 2012 1:47:46 am

The Reliance Infrastructure Limited has offloaded the majority of its shareholding in the consortium that operates the Airport Express Metro link to one of its associate companies.

Following the move,the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) wrote to Reliance Infrastructure seeking an explanation for the change without prior information.

R-Infra held a 95 per cent stake in the Delhi Airport Metro Express Private Limited (DAMEPL),but it slashed that to nearly 30 per cent in the first quarter of this financial year. Construcciones y Auxiliar de Ferrocarriles,SA (CAF) of Spain holds the remaining five per cent stake.

A Reliance Infra spokesperson told Newsline: “Around 60 per cent of the stakes have been transferred to one of the associate companies. Disposing of shareholding from our subsidiary DAMEPL is in accordance with the contract (with Delhi Metro) and the law.”

The airport line was shut for repairs on July 8 this year after defects were detected in its structure.

The operations are expected to resume not before mid-November,an R-Infra spokesperson said.

Early this year,the DAMEPL had also cited financial losses in operating the line to request the Delhi Metro to defer payment of the annual concessionaire fee of Rs 51 crore.

An official said the Delhi Metro was concerned about the sudden offloading,and wrote in the letter that it violates the contract agreement.

“At the time of bidding,the contract of Airport Metro was bagged by the Reliance-backed operator. Now,Delhi Metro officials feel that by disposing of the majority of the stakes and altering the shareholding pattern,Reliance Infra has violated the agreement,” an official said.

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