Chennai: The delay-plagued Metro Rail project suffered another blow on Tuesday when Chennai Metro Rail Limited (CMRL) terminated the contract of Gammon India citing lack of progress in work. Recently, the latter’s joint venture partner, the Russian firm Mosmetrostroy, had abandoned the project. This means commuters will continue to live with severe traffic jams on the Anna Salai stretch for at least another two years till the work is complete.
Officials of Chennai Metro Rail Limited said they were unhappy with the progress of this project and had been considering terminating the contract for a while now. “It may take at least 2-3 months to call for a fresh tender and finalise it. Then, another two years will be needed to complete the work,” he added.
The termination of this contract comes few months after Mosmetrostroy abandoned the project owing to severe financial crunch. Soon after it walked out of the project, CMRL asked another contractor Afcons Infrastructure Limited to carry out the tunnelling work from Saidapet to Gemini. “They will finish some important work till a fresh contractor steps in,” an official said.
Gammon India in a joint venture with Mosmetrostroy had bagged a contract of Rs. 1,947 crore from CMRL for seven underground stations including Government Estate, LIC, Gemini, Teynampet and Saidapet.
CMRL had issued show cause notices to Gammon India on previous occasions for their delay in the completion of work. Gammon was also contractor for Delhi Metro Rail and faced sanctions after a mishap at a worksite in 2009.
This is not the first time that CMRL had terminated its contractor. Earlier, the contracts of Consolidated Construction Consortium Limited (CCCL) and Lanco Infratech Limited were also terminated by CMRL for the tardy progress of work and after several months, fresh contracts were awarded.