The Centre on Friday will lay the foundation of four major transport infrastructure projects in the National capital Region (NCR) of over ₹1.5 lakh crore investment just before the code of conduct for the election is rolled out.
While PM Narendra Modi will lay the foundation stone for the country’s first rapid rail project linking Delhi’s Sarai Kale Khan with Meerut costing about Rs 31,000 crore, three of his senior cabinet colleagues – finance minister Arun Jaitley, external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj and highways minister Nitin Gadkari- will launch the construction of the country’s longest Expressway from Delhi to Mumbai and Dwarka Expressway. These projects will require investment of Rs 1.1 lakh crore.
Both Haryana chief minister Manohar Lal Khattar and his Delhi counterpart Arvind Kejriwal are likely to attend the event. Gurgaon MP Rao Inderjit Singh said he was confident of both the projects progressing well and would meet the deadlines that would be set by the NHAI.
Confirming Modi’s programme, which is likely to be held in Ghazaibad, urban affairs minister Hardeep Singh Puri said the Centre has gone ahead with the 82.15 km Rapid Rail Transit System (RRTS) even as Delhi government kept raising “strange and unconvincing” reservations. “The Cabinet has given the go ahead and we are confident of getting the approval of Delhi Metro Phase-IV project to start the work soon,” Puri said.
The Cabinet is scheduled to take up the approval of DMRC Phase-IV project entailing investment of about Rs 30,000 crore to Rs 35,000 crore on Thursday. Puri did not answer whether the government was also keen to officially start work for this crucial mass transit project.
TOI on February 20 had reported that the government would lay the foundation stone of RRTS and of the ambitious Delhi-Mumbai Expressway and the cabinet approval for DMRC Phase-IV before the poll code kicks in. Modi is also scheduled to inaugurate two Delhi Metro corridors, Dilshad Garden-New Bus Adda section on the Delhi Metro Red Line (9.6 km) and Noida City Centre to Noida Electronic City (6.7 km). He is also scheduled to flag off civilian flight operations from the Hindon airbase. Last week, Gadkari had laid the foundation stone for the 59 km six-lane access control link from Ring Road with the under-construction Delhi-Mumbai Expressway.