After over two years of back and forth between the Delhi government, Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs, and Delhi Metro Rail Corporation, the fourth phase of Delhi Metro was approved in the Delhi government cabinet meeting Wednesday.
Placing the blame for the delay on the BJP and government officers, Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia said the proposal was passed “despite the best efforts of BJP to create hurdles through officers by making them write adverse comments on files and through rumour mongering”.
“Officials were made to write adverse comments, such as on the financial viability, on files so that the matter becomes contentious. The Centre tried to stop our mohalla clinics, doorstep delivery projects, but just like we got these two projects passed, Phase IV has also been passed now,” he said.
The finance department of the Delhi government had said in 2015 that the project is not financially viable. The department again reviewed the project earlier this year and found three of the corridors financially inviable.
Officials at the ministry, however, insisted there was no delay at their end.“DMRC had prepared the proposal of phase IV in October 2014. In June 2016, Delhi government conveyed its agreement but did not agree for its financial commitment as per the guidelines under which the earlier phases of Metro were sanctioned. Since then, DMRC and the ministry have been constantly requesting the Delhi government to give its complete financial commitment. This has held up the appraisal of the project by the central government,” said Rajeev Jain, additional director general, PIB, Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs.
The state government was also skeptical about passing the proposal, which initially, according to officials, said it will bear all operational losses. The decision passed in the cabinet meeting, however, says that the operational losses will be shared equally by the Centre and the state.