'Save-Aarey' Options Closing For CM Uddhav, BJP Makes Metro Appeal Claiming Rs 600 Cr Loss

Politics

After a government panel favoured Aarey as the best site for Metro car shed, BJP leader Kirit Somaiya appealed to the CM to lift the stay on its construction.

Written By Akhil Oka | Mumbai | Updated On:
Kirit Somaiya

After the Maharashtra State Urban Development Committee recommended Aarey as the best possible spot for the Mumbai Metro 3 car shed, BJP called upon Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray to immediately re-start the work of the car shed. BJP leader Kirit Somaiya on Wednesday stated that there had already been a delay of two months. Moreover, he alleged that this had caused a loss of Rs.600 crore to the public exchequer.  

Somaiya opined, "The Maharashtra government’s Metro car shed committee has given its final report. The Committee has recommended that the car shed should be made in Aarey itself. 60 days have already passed. There has been a loss of Rs.600 crore. I will appeal to the Chief Minister to withdraw your stay. You should immediately allow the car shed work to commence again."

Read: Months After Aaditya Demanded Her Removal, MVA Govt Transfers Mumbai Metro 3 Head

Read: Maha CM Thackeray's Big Announcement: Cases Against Aarey Activists To Be Withdrawn

Alternatives not financially viable

One of the first decisions of the Maha Vikas Aghadi government led by Uddhav Thackeray was to stop the work of the Aarey Metro car shed project. The Maharashtra CM asserted that a single leaf of Aarey would not be cut. On December 11, the government set up the committee to identify alternative land for the Metro car shed. This four-member panel was headed by Additional Chief Secretary (Finance). The other members of the committee included Principal Secretary (environment), managing director of Mumbai Rail Vikas Corporation (MRVC), and chief conservator of Forests, Sanjay Gandhi National Park (SGNP). The report submitted by them observed that the two alternative places for the car shed were not financially viable.  

Read: 'Everyone Happy': Aaditya Thackeray Responds As CM Uddhav Halts Aarey Metro Car-shed Work

The Mumbai Metro 3 project

The Mumbai Metro 3 project comprises a 33.5 km underground corridor running along the Colaba-Bandra-SEEPZ route. In total, there will be 27 stations out of which 26 will be underground. At present, nearly 74% of the tunneling work has been completed.  

There has been a long dispute about the location of the Metro car shed. According to environmental activists, Aarey is a forest area and any construction work would hamper the ecological balance. On the other hand, the Devendra Fadnavis regime often highlighted that the long-term gains of the project would offshoot the temporary damage caused due to the felling of trees.  

Read: 'Aarey Is Not Sena-BJP But Human-environment Tussle': Aditya Thackeray

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