The Telangana government on Tuesday extended till November 2018 the time for construction major Larsen & Toubro (L&T) to complete Hyderabad Metro Rail project.
The original construction period for the 71.16 km elevated metro ended on Tuesday but the project could not be completed due to court cases in acquisition of some critical properties.
After detailed technical presentations by the concessionaire L&TMRHL (L&T Metro Rail Hyderabad Limited), independent engineer Louis Berger, and HMRL (Hyderabad Metro Rail Limited) and several rounds of discussions, the government agreed to give an extension of 17 months.
According to HMRL Managing Director N.V.S. Reddy, the concessionaire has been permitted to complete the entire project other than the 5 km stretch in the Old City and about 1 km stretch between Hitec city and Raidurg by November 2018.
While agreeing for this time extension, the interests of the government have been protected, he said.
The state government advised L&TMRHL and HMRL to gear up for launching the completed stretches of the project in the next few months and also to complete corridor-I (Miyapur-LB Nagar: 29 km) and corridor-III (Nagole-Hitec City: 27 km) by the end of 2007.
As per the concession agreement signed with the then government of united Andhra Pradesh in 2010, the project should have been completed by July 4, 2017.
Though the concession agreement for Rs 14,132 crore project, said to be the largest metro project in the world in public-private partnership, was signed in September 2010, the work could commence only in July 2012, L&TMRHL officials had earlier said.
L&TMRHL in 2011 had achieved financial closure for Rs 16,375 crore – Rs 14,132 crore for the metro rail system and Rs.2,243 crore for the first phase of real estate development.
Both the components of the project are being financed through an equity of 30 percent and 70 percent by debt.
L&TMRHL officials had said last year that the project cost may have been escalated by Rs 2,500-3,000 crore.