Giving a push to the ongoing mega infrastructure projects in the city, the Union budget has estimated an expenditure of Rs 814.49 crore for Pune Metro and Rs 689.59 crore for pollution abatement of Mula-Mutha river in 2024-25.
In its budget estimates for 2024-25, the Union government has considered an allocation of Rs 814.49 crore for Pune Metro rail from the loan raised through European Investment Bank (EIB). The EIB has committed to invest EUR 600 million for the construction of two lines of Phase 1 of Pune Metro rail and for the acquisition of 102 modern Metro cars, signing to date EUR 350m. The Pune Metro system will have 33.2 km of tracks, both over and underground, with 30 stations, and increase the coverage of the public city transport network.
The Phase 1 of Metro rail is nearing completion with the possible launch of service for the stretch from Shivajinagar to Swargate by the end of this financial year. “The work of Phase 1 is nearing completion. The Union government, considering the stage of work completion, has made budgetary allocation for the work done for Phase one,” said Hemant Sonawane, Executive Director of Pune Metro rail.
The Union government a few months ago had given extension to the route from Pimpri Chinchwad to Nigdi while the proposal for extension of route from Swargate to Katraj is pending with it. The Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) has also submitted the proposal for implementation of Phase two of Metro that would increase the Metro rail network from Sinhagad road to Nagar Road via Solapur Road along with extension of existing route to Wagholi on Nagar Road, Chandni Chowk on Paud Road and Sinhagad Road via Warje.
The Union government, taking note of the speed of ongoing project of pollution abatement of Mula-Mutha river, has made a budgetary estimate of Rs 689.59 crore for the project in the next financial year. “The civic body has already started the work on the project and completed 40 per cent of work so far. It includes construction of 11 Sewage Treatment Plants (STP) across the city and laying 55,000 km of sewage lines to ensure that no untreated sewage water is released in river,” said Jagdish Khanore, Executive Engineer of PMC.
The Rs 990-crore project was delayed for various reasons but has finally got the much-needed start in the current financial year. However, the project escalated to nearly Rs 1,400 crore as against the soft loan of Rs 990 crore for the project awarded by Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA). “There is a commitment to complete the project by end of next financial year in March 2025. Thus, the work is going on in full swing. The JICA loan is provided to Union government which grants the same amount to PMC as grant. The PMC has so far received Rs 300 crore against the work done and the Union government has made the allocation of remaining amount in next financial year,” he said.
Khanore said the PMC has also requested the Union government to allocate the escalated cost of the project while it would be bearing the 15 per cent total cost of the project as per the agreement with JICA. “We are hopeful to get funding to cover the escalated cost of the project so that there is no shortage of funds to complete the project on time,” he added.