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Buy new rakes now, save cost

Armed with the expectation that the 11.07-kilometre Versova-Andheri- Ghatkopar (VAG) Metro line will elicit an overwhelming response from the public, the Mumbai Metropolitan One Private Limited (MMOPL) has sent a letter to the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) requesting that more rakes be purchased as early as possible.

Metro
Want more: One of the five brand new Metro coaches that arrived in the Andheri Metro yard earlier this month

The MMOPL believes that by purchasing the rakes now, money will be saved, as the rakes will be more expensive in future.

MMRDA Joint Project Director Dilip Kawatkar said, “A letter was sent by MMOPL to MMRDA recently stating that since the 11.07-Km VAG Metro line is expected to witness good response from commuters, more rakes should be purchased at the earliest so that the Metro does not face any shortage in future. We are yet to take any decision on the same.”

Don’t buy rakes
However, some senior officials in the authority disagree with the move.

“I personally feel that MMOPL should first see to it that the pending work on the corridor is completed as soon as possible. The decision to buy additional rakes should only be taken after looking at the response on the line once it is operational,” said a senior MMRDA official on condition of anonymity.

So far, five rakes of the 16 rakes ordered from CSR Nanging, China, have arrived in the city and the remaining 11 will arrive by December before the 11.07-km line is operational.

Versova-Andheri-Ghatkopar (11.07 km)
Cost: Original cost: Rs 2,356 crore. Cost has escalated to over Rs 2,400 crore due to delays

Deadlines missed: Initially the deadline for completion was December 2010, which was extended to June 2011 and then to March 2012. Later, it was again extended to November 2012. Now MMRDA is saying that it will be operational by March 2013, and that too in phases. In phase one, the line from Versova to Airport Rd station will become operational. 

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