‘Slow Progress Of Land Acquisition In Maharashtra Delaying Mumbai-Ahmedabad Bullet Train Project,’ Govt Tells Rajya Sabha

A bullet train
A bullet train

The union government has informed Rajya Sabha that slow progress in land acquisition in Maharashtra is one of the causes for delays in the Mumbai-Ahmedabad High-Speed Rail (MAHSR) project.

In a written reply to a question in Rajya Sabha on Friday (23 July), Minister of Railways Ashwini Vaishnaw said that the bullet train project had suffered delays also due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Mumbai-Ahmedabad High-Speed Rail (MAHSR) project is the only sanctioned project of High-Speed Rail (HSR) in the country, which is under execution with financial and technical assistance from the Government of Japan.

A Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV), namely National High-Speed Rail Corporation Limited (NHSRCL), has been formed to implement the project.

Regarding the current status of the high-speed rail project, the government informed the house that the final location survey and geotechnical investigation were completed, alignment finalized, statutory clearances relating to wildlife, Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ) and Forest clearance obtained.

“1342 out of 1651 utilities shifted. The entire project work has been divided into 27 Contract Packages including Training Institute at Vadodara. At present, seven packages have been awarded and ten more have been invited,” the Ministry of Railways said.

The total cost incurred on the MAHSR Project up to June 2021 is approximately Rs 13,483 crores, mainly on land acquisition, utility shifting and contractual payments.

It must be noted that the Ministry of Railways has assigned the work for survey and preparation of Detailed Project Report (DPR) for the seven HSR corridors to NHSRCL.

The seven corridors include Chennai-Bangalore-Mysore and Mumbai-Pune-Hyderabad routes of Southern India.