Punjab, Haryana fail to give consent to MoU terms, hold SPV for Chandigarh Metro Rail

The wait for Chandigarh Metro Rail seems to be getting longer. Reason: the Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) for the Metro is yet to be constituted as the governments of Punjab and Haryana have not conveyed their consent to the MoU terms and conditions.

The terms and conditions proposed by the Ministry of Urban Development had been circulated among the stakeholders around four months back.

The Metro Rail is a Rs 10,900-crore project. The Centre, Chandigarh as well as Punjab and Haryana are the stakeholders in the project. As per the MoU proposed, the equity structure would be divided equally between all the stakeholders. While the stakeholders had agreed on the constitution of the SPV at a meeting held in June this year, the terms and conditions are yet to be finalised. The directions for the same had been given by the Centre.

To be called Chandigarh Tricity Multi-Modal Transport Corporation (CTMTC), the SPV, once constituted, would oversee all the work of the Metro Rail. The officials appointed to the SPV were to specifically deal only with the Metro, ensuring removal of all hurdles in the process. However, this would be possible only when the stakeholders agree to the terms and conditions.

Recently, Punjab Governor and UT Administrator Shivraj V Patil took serious note of the delay and directed the officials of the administration to expedite the process. He was told that the delay was due to Punjab and Haryana not having given their consent to the terms and conditions of the MoU. The officials were then directed to persuade the states to give their replies.

A report on Metro Rail was prepared by the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation and submitted to the administration in August last year. As per the report, two corridors have been proposed for the Metro. The East-West corridor would extend from Grain Market in Sector 21, Panchkula, to Transport Terminus at Mullanpur. The North-South corridor would be from near Capitol Complex in Sector 1 to Gurdwara Shaheedan in Mohali.

The physical demarcation of the corridors was completed a few months back. Milestones have been erected along the route of the Metro. However, at the Centre, apprehension had been expressed over the financial feasibility of the Metro Rail for the Tricity.