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Home > Mumbai > Mumbai News > Article > Mumbai State to lose Rs 16K cr due to deal between MMRDA and MMOPL

Mumbai: ‘State to lose Rs 1.6K cr due to deal between MMRDA and MMOPL’

Updated on: 22 April,2024 07:10 AM IST  |  Mumbai
Rajendra B. Aklekar |

RTI activist says report on acquisition, where Reliance Infra’s stake in Metro Line 1 is valued at Rs 4K crore, isn’t being made public

Mumbai: ‘State to lose Rs 1.6K cr due to deal between MMRDA and MMOPL’

A Mumbai Metro train between Ghatkopar and Versova on September 19, 2020. File Pic/Sayyed Sameer Abedi

A city-based RTI activist has alleged that the Maharashtra government has recently endorsed an acquisition deal finalised between the Mumbai Metro Blue Line 1 and the Mumbai Metropolitan Regional Development Authority (MMRDA) which could cause the state’s exchequer to lose Rs 1,600 crore. Alleging that the MMRDA has refused to share documents, he has demanded that public consultation be made before giving further approval. Launched in 2007, Mumbai Metro Blue Line 1, the city's first Metro project, was set up under the build-operate-transfer (BOT) model. It has been the subject of controversies involving the joint venture partners.

Recently the state cabinet approved a report by retired IAS officer and former Chief Secretary Johny Joseph, which valued Reliance Infrastructure’s stake at Rs 4,000 crore. When RTI activist Anil Galgali asked for a copy of the report, MMRDA Deputy Transport Engineer Gajanan Sasane allegedly informed him a month after the RTI application was filed that the documents could not be made available as they were commercial in nature.

“In January 2023, Sasane had informed me that the acquisition process was in progress and information would be given once it was completed,” Galgali told mid-day. According to documents provided under the RTI Act the that time, Reliance Infrastructure had requested MMRDA to acquire Mumbai Metro 1 by making an offer in July 2020. The first Metro contract in Mumbai has an equity structure of 70:30. The total cost of the Metro was Rs 2,355 crore.

“The Internal Study Group (ISG) formed by the Maharashtra government included former chief secretary Johny Joseph, then Additional Chief Secretary Bhushan Gagrani and Mumbai Metro Rail Corporation Limited (MMRCL) Executive Director R Ramana. The state cabinet recently approved the report which valued R-Infra’s stake at R4,000 crore. The concession agreement between MMRDA and MMOPL [Mumbai Metro One Private Limited] was signed on March 7, 2007, on a public-private partnership basis. The total cost of the constructed project was Rs 2,356 crore as per the cost calculated at that time,” he added.

Galgali alleged that the MMRDA did not take into consideration the views of common citizens regarding such a big deal and now even after the approval of the cabinet, the report was not being shared or made public. “The government is incurring a loss of Rs 1,600 crore due to this report. After all, on what basis was the valuation of Rs 4,000 crore decided? This can become known only after the report becomes public. Such a deal required legal advice as MMRDA and MMOPL were not on good terms since 2007. The government should approve this expensive deal only after making the report public and taking the public’s opinions and suggestions,” he said. The MMRDA did not respond to queries despite repeated attempts. 

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