Bengaluru: When the Bangalore Metro Rail Corporation Ltd (BMRCL) and the Karnataka Rail Infrastructure Development Company (K-Ride), on their own, were struggling to get Centre’s approval for the much-awaited Metro and Surubran rail proposals, BJP’s young face and Bengaluru South MP Tejasvi Surya has thrown his weight behind the two important infrastructure projects.
Both the projects — a Metro line between Outer Ring Road (from Central Silk Board) and Kempegowda International Airport, and a 145-km suburban rail network — were stuck in various departments of the union government for want of approvals. The officials were finding it difficult to get a green signal on time mainly due to lack of political will both at the state government and the Centre.
While the 145-km suburban rail project, which received a go ahead from the state government, is awaiting a green signal from NITI Aayog, Ministry of Finance and Railway Board, the Phase II-A (Central Silk Board – KR Puram on ORR) and Phase II-B (KR Puram to Bengaluru Airport) is awaiting Centre’s share of funds, approval to raise long-term loan from international lenders etc.
Over the last weekend, Tejasvi Surya personally met Railway Minister Piyush Goyal and Urban Affairs Minister Hardeep Singh Puri for the speedy approvals of both Metro and Suburban rail projects.
The parliamentarian from Bengaluru South Lok Sabha constituency also posted both pictures and the letters he wrote to the ministries on the micro-blogging platform Twitter. “Firms in ORR account for 32% of our IT revenue. But this 17km corridor is stuck @ 4kmph with road transport functioning beyond saturation level. Only soln? Well connected metro. I pressed upon @MoHUA_India’s Hon Min @HardeepSPuri for speedy approval of #NammaMetro’s Phases 2A, 2B,” Tejasvi said on Twitter.
“To prevent Bengaluru from crumbling in its own mess, this metro line needs to be made functional at the earliest. The ORR & Airport lines, 56 km with 31 stations & an expected daily ridership of 7.5L in 2025, will serve as the nerve centre for Bengaluru’s and India’s economic growth,” another tweet from Surya, posted on October 27, read.
On the suburban rail project, Bengaluru South MP said: “B’luru has been waiting for #SuburbanRail for 30+ yrs. On Oct 30, the project will be placed before Extended Board Meeting of @NITIAayog & @RailMinIndia for approval. I met NITI CEO Shri @amitabhk87 & he has assured his support for the project!,” he said on Twitter.
“B’luru moves at 4kmph in peak hours & 470hrs are lost per employee per yr. A victim myself of city’s mobility problem, I put forth plight of daily commuters before @NITIAayog CEO, told him we need #SuburbanRail. Let’s work together to ensure it doesn’t run into any other hurdlesB’luru’s #MobilityCrisis leads to colossal productivity loss of $4.75 Billion per yr!,” Surya said, after meeting NITI Aayog CEO.
The DPR on Suburban rail project might get a green signal from the Railway Board on Wednesday. “Robust public transport system with #SuburbanRail need of the hour. A long time supporter, Hon Rly Min Shri @PiyushGoyal said project will be considered positively at Oct 30 Extended Board Meet. B’luru is lucky to have @SureshAngadi_ as MoS Rly, championing cause of #SuburbanRail since the day he took charge. Grateful to @BSYBJP for approving revised DPR soon after taking office. All of us B’luru MPs – @DVSadanandGowda, @PCMohanMP – will work towards making it a reality.”