Metro carshed at Kanjurmarg was planned by Fadnavis govt: Cong

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Mumbai, Nov 6 (PTI) The Maharashtra Congress on Friday claimed that the proposed Metro car shed in Kanjurmarg had been planned by the erstwhile Devendra Fadnavis government, and the current MVA dispensation was only implementing that plan.

Stating that the Kanjurmarg land belonged to the state government and there was never any claim over it, Congress spokesperson Sachin Sawant alleged that the BJP misguided Mumbaikars over the issue.

His statement comes days after the Centre wrote a letter to Maharashtra chief secretary, stating that the 102- acre land for the proposed Metro-3 car shed in Kanjurmarg belonged to it.

'When the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government decided to shift the Metro car shed to Kanjurmarg, all of a sudden the salt department tried to stake claim over it. But the department could not provide any proof to support the claim that the land belongs to it and not the state government,' Sawant told reporters.

'The orders in this regard were given by the District Collector in 2014, Divisional Commissioner in 2015 and even by former Revenue Minister Chandrakant Patil in 2018. Besides, in the plan submitted by the administration in 2015, it was clearly stated that there is no dispute over this 102 acre land,' he said.

'It was the opinion of the Fadnavis government that the car shed of Metro-3 should be in Kanjurmarg only and the step taken by the MVA today was as per the plan of the previous government,' he said.

Sawant claimed that the then MMRDA top official Ashwini Bhide had written a letter in September 2015 to the Mumbai Suburban District Collector, seeking land in Kanjurmarg for Metro car depot and other works, which stated that the land in Kanjurmarg was 'most suitable' for the Metro-3 project.

An affidavit was filed in the high court by the state government in 2016 on this issue. The state government had appointed an expert committee in March 2015. That panel gave its final report in August 2015 stating that the main depot of Metro-3 should be connected to the Metro-6 line in Kanjurmarg, Sawant said.

'This means that the location of Kanjurmarg was important and it is clear that it was in the plan. Metro-6 car depot was already to be located in Kanjurmarg,' he said.

'Metro-6 has been demanding 102 acres of land for car shed depot since 2018, but why was it delayed? Even though this land remained in possession of the state government since 2015, why was it not given? Till date, the site has not been allotted to Metro-6,' he alleged.

He also claimed that tenders to build depot entry ramp at Kanjurmarg were issued and cancelled twice in 2018.

'If there was a problem with the land, how were the tenders issued?' Sawant asked. PTI MR NP NP