Dailybhaskar.com | Last Modified - Sep 23, 2012, 04:33 PM IST
Kolkata/New Delhi: Their alliance is over but not enemity.
The Trinamool Congress (TMC) and UPA have finally parted ways, but not before TMC leader and West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee managed to get the nod for her pet project despite stringent opposition from ministries.
The Union Cabinet had on August 23 approved the transfer of the under-construction 15 km East-West Metro corridor project in Kolkata - a joint venture between the West Bengal government and urban development ministry - to the railway ministry.
The transfer means that the state Metro system would fall prey to the populist designs of rail ministers.
The old North-South corridor, called the Kolkata Metro, is also run by the railway ministry. It was on June 11, 2009, that Mamata, then railways minister, had written to PM Manmohan Singh and cited political reason to seek full control of the new corridor from the then Left Frontrun West Bengal government, The Mail Online reported.
"In the changed political scenario (Lok Sabha election), it will not be possible for the government of West Bengal to implement this project as they would engage themselves in evicting 1.8 million people in Kolkata. There is likely to be total disruption of work in Kolkata and West Bengal… therefore the ministry of railways should be given the responsibility of the project," The Mail Online quoted her as saying.
Now that the transfer is approved, the railway ministry would hold 74 per cent share in the Kolkata Metro Rail Corporation Limited (KMRCL), which is managing the new corridor, and devise the fare structure and operational strategies for the Metro.
The project, costing Rs 4,874 crore, is funded by the Japan International Cooperation Agency.