Chandrababu Naidu looks at JICA for investment in Vijayawada Metro project

Naidu with Sreedharan
Discussing details AP Chief Minister Chandrababu Naidu with E Sreedharan, Advisor, Vijayawada Metro Rail Project (file photo)

Vijayawada: Even as Union Ministry of Urban Development raised doubts over the feasibility of Vijayawada Metro Rail, Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu requested E.Sreedharan, former CMD/DMRC and Advisor for various Metro Rail projects in the State, to ensure that it starts taking shape at the earliest.

“Funding is not a problem, he said, as the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) is keen on extending financial assistance to them”, Mr. Naidu said in a meeting with the Metro Man in Hyderabad on Friday.  On the Viability Gap Analysis, he mentioned that MUD’s report was based on certain parameters.

However once the State Capital starts functioning from Amaravati – the newly announced Capital of Andhra Pradesh, then Vijayawada-Guntur-Tenali corridor including the suburbs like Mangalagiri, Nuzivid etc will form part of Amaravathi Capital Region and hence the scope and viability of the Metro Rail project will get scaled up to 10-12 times than the current analysis by MUD, he added.

During a detailed discussion on Visakhapatnam and Vijayawada metro railway projects, Mr.Naidu said that Mr.Sreedharan, who was former MD of Delhi Metro Rail Corporation, could visit places like Istanbul where public transportation has been revolutionized by metro rail projects and probably replicate the best practices back home.

Mr.Naidu wanted first phase of Visakhapatnam project to be completed by the end of 2018 and the one planned for Vijayawada launched at the earliest.

Mr.Sreedharan and his team were asked to prepare a process chart for regular monitoring and to take care of logistical issues that might derail the projects.

Since metro rail projects were cost-effective means of transportation in the coming years, A.P. Government attached due priority to them and looked forward to experts like Mr.Sreedharan to chip in with their expertise, Mr.Naidu added.