Telangana keeps Railways waiting on Joint Venture

HYDERABAD: TS Government might be lobbying for more railway investments across the State yet progress of several key rail works could be in jeopardy unless it gets going on the proposed joint venture with the South Central Railway (SCR).

There are at least six works which have been suggested to be taken up jointly by both parties for speedier construction where some of them need the Government to pitch in with at least one-third funding or half the project cost funding of the overall estimates along with providing land.

“We have proposed six projects costing Rs. 4,873 crore for a length of 755 km through the joint venture with the TS Government here. Papers are ready from our side and we are waiting for the Government to give its opinion for approval,” revealed senior railway officials, pleading anonymity.

Changed estimates

Among the works under this pipeline are: Manoharabad-Kothapalli 151.36 km link initially proposed in 2006-07 when the cost was estimated to be Rs. 671.82 crore and which has now escalated to Rs. 1,160.48 crore. Thus far, Rs. 30 crore was allotted by the railways and Government, respectively, last year.

In the case of Manuguru-Ramagundam 200 km line, the Government had in fact agreed to 50% funding besides providing land free of cost. Here too the costs have escalated from Rs. 1,112 crore in 2013-14 to Rs. 1,545 crore.

The Government had even allocated Rs. 485.02 crore for the project

SCCL project

Bhadrachalam Road to Sathupalli 56.25 km line was also proposed to be taken up at a cost of Rs. 337.5 crore in 2010-11 and the same has now got increased to Rs. 792.01 crore where the Singareni Collieries Company Ltd (SCCL) is to pick up the entire cost. Here too a mere Rs. 25 crore was allocated last year.

While there is no progress in Gadwal-Mancherial 184.2 km rail link estimated to cost Rs. 919.78 crore in 2007-08, situation is no different in two other projects where cost sharing is yet to be worked out like — Bodhan-Bidar 100 km rail link that was estimated to cost Rs. 1029.14 crore way back in 2010-11 and Secunderabad-Zaheerabad 63.5 km railway line work which was estimated to cost Rs. 456.39 crore in 2010-11.