The Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) will be imposing a penalty of Rs 7.5 lakh per day from January 1 on L&T Infrastructure-Scomi Engineering for the inordinate delay in completing the Phase II of the Mumbai Monorail. “We have already sent a notice to the contractor regarding the fine and it will be imposed from January 1,” said Sanjay Khandare, Additional Metropolitan Commissioner, MMRDA.
The completion of the 10.24-km corridor from Wadala to Jacob Circle has missed several deadlines since 2011. However, in this year, they have missed four deadlines — February, June, October and now December. In a written reply during the Budget Session of the state legislature, CM Devendra Fadnavis had told the Opposition that the corridor would be made operational by December 2017. With Commissioner of Railway Safety yet to certify the corridor, that deadline has also been missed.
After a fire gutted two coaches of the monorail on November 9, the Phase I connecting Chembur to Wadala has also been closed to public. Following an investigation on the cause of the fire, the CRS had made several recommendations to make it safer. While there is still no clarity on when it will resume operations, the MMRDA proposes to start services on both the phases together.
“Some of the recommendations need to be implemented immediately. We are working towards it. Apart from that some crucial parts of the system are missing or are non functioning and need to be fixed. We can start the Phase I operations only after this is completed. We will start both the phases together now,” added Khandare.
Meanwhile, the operations will continue to be plagued by insufficient rakes as MMRDA still awaits delivery of five more rakes. Currently, MMRDA has procured 10 rakes, of which only five are functioning. However, at least seven rakes are required to run regular operations. “We require at least seven rakes to run operations at a frequency of 20 minutes. We currently have five and will get two more operational by the time we begin service,” he added.