The ambitious metro rail project for Pune and Nagpur in Maharashtra got a boost recently with the state government giving administrative approval for the proposed urban transport system.
It was almost a decade back in Nagpur that a technical survey was conducted by Larsen and Tourbo on behalf of Nagpur Improvement Trust (NITT) for a Metro Rail for about 70-90 km route. Now the state government has appointed Delhi Metro Rail Corporation as the consultant which will be preparing a detailed project report (DPR) by August this year.
NIT is the nodal agency for completing the project.
However, it is yet to initiate a process of consultation among leadership and bureaucracy and technocrats on proposed shape, size, length, route and other modalities.
Also, city Congress MP Vilas Muttemwar and other leaders including Maharashtra Minister for Food and Civil Supplies Anil Deshmukh have expressed divergent views on the project.
Mr Muttemwar has demanded that NIT should organise a seminar on various factors to come to a conclusion in the larger interest of Nagpurians and in the best interest of commuters.
The MP in a letter to NIT Chairman Praveen Darade in December last year advocated an underground Metro which does not require land acquisition and also free from legal hurdles though little expensive.
He said approximately Rs 300 crores would be required for laying underground Metro which was higher in cost than the elevated rail line.
Mr Muttemwar has demanded that it should be from Transport Plaza (North city area) to Mihan which is next to city airport and there was no need for extending it to Butibori industrial area.
While Deshmukh was in favour of laying Metro rail either on the ground or above but certainly not underground.
He told reporters recently that underground metro rail project will be an extensive one as compared to other two options.