‘May not have boarded same train but…’: Thackeray praises Fadnavis, Gadkari at Nagpur Metro second leg inauguration

China-made train coaches for Nagpur metro come off production line

Last year in March, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had inaugurated the 13.5 km Reach 1 between the southern end of Khapri to Sitabuldi.

Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray Tuesday praised his predecessor Devendra Fadnavis and Union Minister Nitin Gadkari for their efforts in developing the state. Inaugurating the second leg of Nagpur Metro via video link, Thackeray said: "We were part of a government. We may not have boarded the same train but today we have come together at a station."

"In politics when it comes to taking credit for work then a politician is not a politician if he does not take credit for a work. But, I want to humbly say we do not want to take credit but just blessings of people," he added.

He also praised Gadkari for fulfilling Sena founder and his father late Bal Thackeray's dream of having a sea bridge linking Worli in south Mumbai to Bandra, a western suburb. The cable-stayed bridge was inaugurated in 2009. He said both Fadnavis and Gadkari, who hail from Nagpur, should work hand in hand for development of Maharashtra.

Thackeray, Gadkari and Union Minister for Civil Aviation Hardeep Singh Puri inaugurated the 11-km corridor between Lokmanya Nagar-Sitabuldi interchange. Puri took part in the inauguration through video link from Delhi.Fadnavis was also present at the inauguration ceremony.

The new stretch, Reach 3, also called Aqua Line as its run along side two city lakes and the Nag river, will connect Lokmanya Nagar to the commercial hub of Sitabuldi at. With this, the total length of metro rail service available to citizens has reached 24.5 km. Incidentally, the aqua line was ready for inauguration for some time now and was to be opened by Modi about five months ago but the programme was cancelled at the last minute. Last year in March, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had inaugurated the 13.5 km Reach 1 between the southern end of Khapri to Sitabuldi.

Work for the remaining two stretches, Reach 2 and 4, together about 15 km, is progressing at an advanced stage. The total cost of the project is pegged at of Rs 8,680 crore.

Speaking on the occasion, Gadkari praised Maha Metro for "world class" and "fast" completion of the project and said that soon Nagpur will be connected to the neighboring towns in Vidarbha with "broad guage" metros running at a speed of 120 km per hour. Gadkari also said that Maha Metro will produce rolling stock for Pune and other metros in the country for which a manufacturing unit is proposed at Sindi Rly in Wardha district.

D S Mishra said, "With today's stretch of Nagpur metro, the country now has 685 km metro network, 500 of them in the last five years. With metros being constructed in 27 cities, the network will go up to 1,600 km over the next five years."

Fadnavis praised Maha Metro for the "good work" and said, "it's a matter of pride that Maha Metro is getting inquiries for the metro works in various other cities."