‘No operational loss for metro in recent years’
Do not do anything against public interest,” the court told senior advocate Dhruv Mehta, appearing for the Delhi government.
Senior advocate Aparajita Singh, who is assisting the court as amicus curiae, contended that DMRC had been a profitable venture which has not witnessed any operational losses in recent years.
The proposal for Phase IV, consisting of six corridors
with a total length of 103.94 km, was submitted in 2014 by DMRC and work was to begin in 2016 but could not take off due to differences between the two governments. The Centre in March moved to approve three of the six corridors.
The three corridors — Mukundpur-Maujpur, R K Ashram-Janakpuri West and Aero City-Tughlakabad corridors — with a total length of 61.6 km will have 17 underground and 29 elevated stations. Of its total length, 22.3 km will be underground and 39.3 km as an elevated section. The other three proposed corridors are Rithala-BawanaNarela, Inderlok-Indraprastha and Lajpat Nagar-Saket G Block.
Settling the dispute between the Centre and Delhi government, the bench said financial liability of Phase IV metro arising out of operational losses and default in loan payment would be borne by Delhi and the land cost for the project would be shared equally between the two governments.
The court rejected the Centre’s plea that it cannot be asked to pay for the land cost as it is against the Metro policy framed by it in 2017. The Delhi government had insisted on it, saying the Centre paid half of the land cost in earlier three phases.
“Considering the peculiar position of Delhi and also the pollution aspect, we direct that 50% of the land cost shall be borne by the NCT government and rest 50% by Centre,” the bench said and directed the Centre to release Rs 1,223.60 crore as land cost to DMRC. It directed that there should not be any further delay in construction of Phase IV of the metro network.
The court rejected the Centre’s plea that it cannot be asked to pay for the land cost as it is against the Metro policy framed by it in 2017