Chennai: Looks like Monorail projects are finding it tough to gain grounds in the country. Earlier it was the Mumbai Monorail project where the curtain came down. Now it seems Chennai Monorail Project too seem to have its faith sealed. The ambitious project is grounded with authorities planning to expand metro rail network across Chennai.
The ambitious project of Monorail was announced by late chief minister Jayalalithaa. This project is not likely to take off as the focus is to expand metro network. The future of the project seems uncertain at the moment.
While participating in a debate for the demand on grants for the Transport Department in the Assembly, Anbil Mahesh, DMK MLA questioned the M.R. Vijayabhaskar , the transport Minister regarding the current status of the monorail project.
Mahesh during the discussion pointed out that the status of the monorail project which was talked about in the Policy Note of 2017-18 has not been mentioned in this year’s policy note.
Pained with the project being shelved, Mahesh reminded everyone that the monorail project was close to the heart of former CM Jayalalithaa. In a sarcastic tone he also added that with monorail dropped, does the ruling government think that Metro Rail, a project launched under DMK regime is an efficient mode of transport over monorail.
The ruling party during the discussion, intervened to explain the reason for dropping monorail. P. Thangamani, electricity minister shared that when monorail project was launched, it was planned for narrow roads. When tender was invited the authorities did not receive expected response. For this reason the project did not take off.
On the other hand, the metro rail project had taken off and this facility was extended to other parts of the city leading to high increase in cost.
The minister later on clarified that the monorail project is not dumped. It will be taken up post modification in routes and other dimensions.
As per the information, in the Policy Note it was noticeably stated that the Pallavan Transport Consultancy Services, the nodal agency for executing the monorail project, has been ‘attached’ to the Institute of Road Transport because of sustaining losses to the tune of Rs. 41 lakh.