L&T Metro Rail may invoke force majeure clause with State Government

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Mindspace-Shamshabad Metro corrior
Mindspace-Shamshabad Metro corrior

Hyderabad ( Metro Rail News ) – As there is still uncertainty looming over the resumption of Metro rail services, L&T Metro Rail (Hyderabad) Limited may invoke force majeure clause with the Telangana government seeking an extension of the concession period equivalent to the time it could not operate due to the lockdown, the company said in its latest annual report.

 uncertainty still looming over the resumption of Metro rail services, L&T Metro Rail (Hyderabad) Limited may invoke force majeure clause with the Telangana government seeking an extension of the concession period equivalent to the time it could not operate due to the lockdown, the company said in its latest annual report. The concession period of the project is 35 years, from the appointed date of July 5, 2012, including the initial construction period of five years.

This is extendable for a further period of 25 years, subject to fulfilment of certain conditions by the SPV (special purpose vehicle) as set out in the concession agreement. The L&T Metro Rail (Hyderabad) said it has already submitted project cost overrun details to the state government for Rs 3,756 crore and “has been pursuing the matter with the government for providing relief.” The original cost at the time of conception was Rs 16, 375 crores which have now crossed Rs 20,000 crore.

Metro Rail operations in the city came to a standstill from March 22 due to the lockdown announced by the Centre. “…However, the company is protected by the force majeure clauses of the Concession Agreement to claim extension of concession period equal in length to the period during which the Concessionaire was prevented from collection of Fare and reimbursement of force majeure costs. The management of the company will study the impact and will lodge appropriate claims within reasonable time once the operations are resumed,” it said the annual report.

Hyderabad and Mumbai are the only two cities in the country where Metro Rail is operated by private players under PPP (public-private partnership) mode and hence the resumption of operations is essential for the healthy survival of the concessionaire, an expert of the public transport said. The company’s revenues from operations and other income for 2019-20 stood at Rs 598.20 crore (including fare and non-fare revenue) as against Rs 318.46 crore for the previous financial year.

The loss before tax and after tax were Rs 382.21 crore for the financial year under review as against loss before and after tax of Rs 147.32 crore and Rs 148.15 crore respectively for the previous financial year. The Concession Agreement includes construction of 71.

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