Standoff between Centre and Delhi govt ends, SC directs DMRC to start Construction Work for Metro Phase IV

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The Top Court on Friday directed the DMRC to start the construction work for Delhi Metro’s Phase IV. The Phase IV of the Delhi Metro was stuck for three years due to a tussle between Delhi ruling AAP and Centre ruling BJP over funding after AAP said it will give its nod.

In its affidavit in the Top Court, Delhi Government said that Both the Centre and Delhi Government are 50:50 stakeholders in the equity of DMRC. It further said the court needs to reexamine the decision of the Centre to make Delhi liable to pay the entire land cost.

After the Delhi Government’s submission, the Apex Court directed the DMRC to start construction work for the Delhi Metro Phase IV.

It should be noted that the project was submitted by DMRC in the year 2014 and was slated to begin from 2016. However, it got delayed because of the differences between the two governments

The Delhi Aam Aadmi Party government had not approved the project, raising the questions on central government’s proposal that it would have to bear the land cost, operational losses, and repayment of the loan in case of default.

Delhi Metro Phase IV has a total of 6 Corridors: Rithala-Bawana-Narela, Janakpuri West-RKAshram, Mukundpur-Maujpur, Inderlok-Indraprastha, Aero City-Tughlakabad, and Lajpat Nagar-Saket G Block.

READ: Union Cabinet Gives Green Signal to Three Corridors of Delhi Metro Phase IV

The Union Government had in March early this year approved the three corridors of Phase IV. Earlier Delhi Government in its Budget Proposed ₹500 Crore for Stalled Metro Phase IV Project.

However, as the standoff between the two governments continued, the Environment Pollution Control Authority (EPCA) moved to the Top Court seeking its intervention. Senior Advocate Aparajita Singh told the Top Court bench the project is important to deal with the problem of pollution and traffic congestion of the national capital. She further said any delay will cost the city enormously.

The standoff between the two government started with the National Metro Rail Policy (NMRP) of August 2017 which specifies the role of Central Government in public transport infrastructure projects.

The NMRP Policy of 2017, stated the Centre would only provide financing assistance up to 20 percent of the cost of state Metro projects. This had irked the Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal-led Delhi government that had said since both the governments hold an equal share in DMRC, hence the Centre must share the land and taxes proportionately.

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