A few days earlier, the Delhi government had asked DMRC to take the project back to its board to seek its re-approval, as the estimated cost of construction had changed twice. Recently, the DMRC re-approved the Phase IV project.
Delhi Metro Phase IV: In the latest development, the board of directors of the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) have re-approved Delhi Metro’s Phase IV project, according to a TOI report. Now, the project will have to be approved by the Delhi cabinet. A few days earlier, the Delhi government had asked DMRC to take the project back to its board to seek its re-approval before it is placed before the cabinet for its nod. In five years, after the Phase IV gets operational, reaching far-flung areas of the national capital will get much easier. Also, with its the new interchange points, the Delhi Metro network will give commuters more options to avoid lengthy detours.
The DMRC board is headed by the Secretary, Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs and comprises officials from the Central and Delhi government, apart from senior DMRC officials. Officials were quoted saying that the board’s re-validation for the project was mandatory as the estimated cost of construction of Phase IV has changed twice – from Rs 55,208 crore, which was estimated in the first detailed project report submitted to the Centre and Delhi in 2016 to Rs 45,603 crore recently. Further, it had been revised again to around Rs 46,800 crore. The estimated cost in 2014 was based on the earlier tax regime. It was reduced by Rs 10,000 crore by taking the taxes as per GST into account. A Delhi government official was quoted saying that the cost has marginally gone up as the Delhi Metro had earlier failed to factor in the cost of the procurement of metro coaches and laying down the tracks on certain stretches.
According to government sources specific to the report, apart from the change in overall cost of the project, there have also been changes in the loan component of the project, which has necessitated the re-approval from the DMRC board. The proportion of the loan to be provided by Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) has come down to 43%, while it was 60% during Phase I and 54% and 51% in Phase II and Phase III, respectively.
The 104-km-long Phase IV project, has six proposed corridors, namely the Janakpuri West-R K Ashram Marg corridor, Majlis Park-Maujpur corridor, Inderlok-Indraprastha corridor, Tughlakabad-Delhi Aerocity corridor, Lajpat Nagar-Saket G Block corridor, Rithala-Narela corridor. With these tracks and corridors, the remotest parts of the national capital will have connectivity. The project was approved in-principle by the Delhi government in January 2017 but a final approval and financial commitment is still awaited.