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In a recent interview with media, Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray clarified that the Country’s first bullet train project –Mumbai-Ahmedabad High-Speed Rail Corridor – is not in his priority list of major infrastructure projects in Maharashtra. He said that the bullet train subject has now taken a ‘backseat’. However, he prefers a bullet train corridor to connect Mumbai to Nagpur rather than Ahmedabad.
“Since the inception of our government no one asked about this project and we have also not discussed it. We will take people-oriented issues that will benefit our Maharashtra. The government is with people of the state,” Chief Minister said.
Chief Minister said that he would like to connect the capital of Maharashtra, Mumbai, to the state’s sub-capital Nagpur.
“There are some people who deliberately make a difference between people of Vidarbha and the rest of Maharashtra. This Mumbai to Nagpur bullet train will help to bridge the gap. Like Samruddhi Mahamarg, the bullet train will compete if the central government revises its plan,” said the Chief Minister.
Chief Minister said that Shiv Sena as a party has always supported the farmers who opposed the bullet train.
Now, we are in power, we will do whatever it requires to support the farmers. In Nanar refinery also, the central government had approved the plan and some people even offered their land and the transaction also happened. But the majority of people were against the Nanar, so what happened? We cancelled it, the same thing will happen with Mumbai to Ahmedabad bullet train.
Chief Minister further said that his government is like ‘a three-wheeler auto rickshaw- it is a poor man’s vehicle.’
We don’t need bullet trains but I will prefer the auto-rickshaw. There were some differences of opinion and communication gap among the ministers due to the COVID-19 situation. But we are back to normal. We are now maintaining regular communication. I also spoke with Congress president Sonia Gandhi and NCP chief Sharad Pawar.
In Gujarat, the Western Railway Mazdoor Sangh (WRMS) working committee has also decided to request the chairman of Railway Board Vinod Kumar Yadav to drop the Mumbai-Ahmedabad High Speed Rail project and save Rs 1 lakh crore so that economic health of railways can be improved.
The National High Speed Rail Corporation Limited (NHSRCL) has recently resume the constrution work and other shifting activities of Mumbai-Ahmedabad High Speed Rail project after Covid-19 unlock.
This article first appeared on www.urbantransportnews.com
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