CHENNAI (Metro Rail News): The Union Ministry of Urban Development (MoUD) and NITI Aayog have questioned the estimated cost of phase II of the Chennai Metro Rail at ₹69,180 crore, running for a length of 118.9 km in three corridors.
NITI Aayog had written to the MoUD and the Department of Economic Affairs about the huge cost involved in the project told by the Highly placed sources.
A source said “They wanted to know how the project would be funded, the amount of loan, if the State government could bear the cost and many other details. On its party, the MoUD wrote to CMRL officials for the third time, asking them to justify the entire project cost and find ways to cut it down.
MoUD has sent a slew of questions asking why certain elements of the project cost so much and if it could be cut down, according to the sources.
CMRL officials said they had already cut the cost from ₹80,000 crore to the present ₹69,000 crore.
In the initial plan, there were many underground stations, but several of them were converted into elevated stations, and their sizes too were reduced, officials said.
“We have explained how and why each element of the project cost a certain amount,” a CMRL official said.
Officials also claimed that queries on the high cost of projects by MoUD and NITI Aayog were routine, especially when the cost was enormous.
Of the total cost of ₹69,180 crore, the State will bear ₹13,723 crore.
For the remaining ₹55,457 crore, funding agencies will be tapped for 60% funds and the Centre and the State will fund 20% each.