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  Metros   Mumbai  10 Mar 2018  Big boost for infra projects

Big boost for infra projects

THE ASIAN AGE. | SHRUTI GANAPATYE
Published : Mar 10, 2018, 3:07 am IST
Updated : Mar 10, 2018, 3:07 am IST

State budget’s focus: Rail, metro, waterfront for cities and roads for rural areas.

Sudhir Mungantiwar
 Sudhir Mungantiwar

MUMBAI: In a bid to complete infrastructure projects before the 2019 polls, the state government has focused on improving suburban railway services, completing metro rail, constructing road network and utilising sea route. Instead of starting any new infrastructure project, the government has preferred to complete the ongoing projects with the help of the Centre’s fund. The government tried to strike balance between the infrastructure facilities in rural and urban areas. Suburban railways and metro projects got a boost in cities and road projects in rural areas received a big push. Despite Mumbai topping the list of tax collection, the city received meagre funds in return from the budget this year.

To improve the Mumbai railway facilities under Mumbai Urban Transport Project-3 (MUTP-3), the state has told the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) and City and Industrial Development Corporation (CIDCO) to shell out rs 500 crore for this year which is equal to the Centre’s share of Rs 519 crore. For 266 km long routes of the Metro rail in Mumbai, the state has allocated Rs 130 crore. “We are confident that the MMRDA will complete 103 km network of the metro in coming three-four years. About 67 lakh passengers can travel from the metro railway once the project is completed,” Mr Mungantiwar said.     

 

In a major move to improve road connectivity of the state, the government has allocated Rs 10,828 crore for the road projects. The state has sanctioned another Rs 300 crore for repairing roads and constructing bridges under NABARD’s scheme. Under the chief minister Devendra Fadnavis’ Gram Sadak Yojana, the state has allocated Rs 2,255 crore with an aim to build roads of 7,000 km.  

The government has already started the expansion of Mumbai-Pune expressway which will cost Rs 4,797 crore. The tendering process for the Versova-Bandra Sea Link is in progress, Mr Mungantiwar said. Under the Centre’s Sagarmala project, the state has allocated Rs 22 crore for water transportation. It also includes transportation to Mumbai and Konkan region. The government is going to launch water transport between Mandva and Alibaug, the finance minister said.  

 

For electricity generation and improving infrastructure, Rs 7,235 crore has been allocated for entire Maharashtra.

However, the opposition has criticised the budget for not making substantial provision for Mumbai. “There is no substantial provision for Mumbai. The budget will not help the government development of Maharashtra,” former finance minister and NCP leader Jayant Patil said.

Memorials
The Maharashtra government has issued a work order for the memorial to Maratha emperor Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj in the Arabian Sea. Finance minister Sudhir Mungantiwar said that the ambitious project would be completed in three years. This budget has set aside a provision of `300 crore and also promises to increase the funds as per demand and the progress of the work. Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar’s proposed memorial at Indu Mill has received `150 crore. Prime Minister Narendra Modi had laid the foundation stone of this memorial in October 2015. The government issued the order for starting the work on February 9, 2018.

 

Education
The Maharashtra government announced six skill-development universities across state for youth. The government believes that these universities would help the ecosystem of the skill development sector. The state government announced guidance centres in every district for competitive exams and allocated `50 crore for them. The government also announced the formation of Maharashtra International Education Board. It also proposed starting 100 international-standard schools this year.

Social Justice
For the welfare funds of Schedule Caste communities, `9,949 crore has been proposed in the budget. Of this amount, `2,700 crore is for funding district schemes. `357 crore is for health-related schemes, `700 crore for Ramai Gharkul schemes, `718 crore for hostels and `202 crore have been proposed for residential schools. The state government has provided `1,687 crore for orphans, widows and other vulnerable sections of society, while `600 per month will be given to divyang persons of ages 18 to 65 and 40 to 80 per cent of divyangs will get `800 per month. Those who are more than 80 percent handicapped will get `1,000 per month. The government has also announced mobile stalls for divyangs.

 

Tags: nabard, mumbai urban transport project-3