The Chennai Metro Rail Phase II project, worth Rs 61,843 crore, is currently awaiting clearance from the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA). Despite receiving approval from the Public Investment Board two years ago, the project is still pending final approval.
For the past two years, the state government has been funding the Chennai Metro Rail Phase II project in the hope that it would eventually receive approval from the central government.
In this year’s state budget, the Tamil Nadu government allocated Rs 10,000 crore for the project. While officials claim the project is progressing as planned, there is a possibility of delays if the central government does not release the funds on time.
According to Chennai Metro Rail Limited (CMRL) managing director M A Siddique, the project proposal is currently with the Union government for approval, as it is a central project. In the meantime, the Government of India has granted permission to the state government to proceed with the project. Once the CCEA gives its clearance, the state is expected to receive a matching equity contribution from the central government.
According to The New Indian Express report, that the central government has neither approved nor rejected the Chennai Metro Rail Phase II project. The state government has approved the proposal to construct three corridors spanning a length of 118.9 km under Phase II.
It has also requested matching funding from the central government and loan assistance from bilateral/multilateral agencies.
The Phase II project will involve the construction of 128 stations and three rail corridors. Corridor 3 will run from Madhavaram to SIPCOT, covering a distance of 45.8 km. Corridor 4 will span from Lighthouse to Poonamallee Bypass, covering a distance of 26.1 km. Lastly, Corridor 5 will connect Madhavaram to Sholinganallur, spanning a distance of 47 km.
To support the building of the 52.01 km Phase II project, which will link Madhavaram and Sholinganallur (35.67 km) as well as Madhavaram and CMBT (16.34 km), the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) has offered a loan assistance of Rs 20,196 crore.
In addition to the loan assistance from JICA, in-principle approval has been obtained for funding the remaining 66.89 km stretch through multilateral banks like the Asia Development Bank (ADB).
The completion of the entire first phase of the Chennai Metro Rail project is expected by the end of 2025 or 2026. The deadline for completing Phase II of the project is set for 2028.