Centre asks Delhi govt to avail loan for Rapid Rail: Puri

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New Delhi: Union Housing & Urban affairs minister Hardeep Singh Puri communicates to Delhi government that it cannot bear Delhi’s share for rapid rail project.  The propose project is between Sarai Kale Khan and Meerut. This comes after chief minister Arvind Kejriwal requesting center to fund the project.

Puri has instead written to Kejriwal with a suggestion that Delhi government can get loan for the raid rail.

As per close sources, Puri has made it clear that there is a template for all mass transit projects. The template clearly states the shares of equity that the Centre and state have put to. The urban minister asserted that they will not change the said arrangement.

Previously, Puri had communicated to Delhi government that his ministry can help them avail loan at economical rate of interest. As per current data, Delhi government requires to pitch in Rs 1,138 crore as equity for the Rs 31,902 crore project.

Urban affairs secretary Durga Shankar Mishra during the interaction with press at tree plantation drive at New Moti Baug said, “There are alternative channels for availing loans at cheaper rate from the NCR Planning Board.”

Kejriwal has sent a written communication to Puri stating that his government had given in-principle approval for the project. Kejriwal shared that his government could not pay its share due owing to inadequate finance.

The funding blueprint of the entire mass rapid transit projects put into operation is through special purpose vehicle (SPV). Here the arrangement has been 30% equity and the rest 70% as loan. Mutually Centre and state governments bear equivalent share in the equity.

The Delhi government will have to look for loan facility to kick-start the project. Now with the center declining financial assistance due to set template for rapid rail project, the state government will have explore alternative funding option. They will have to pay heed to the suggestion of Durga Shankar Mishra to secure loan for the rapid rail.

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