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As airport line gets push, Karnataka govt far behind in meeting Centre’s metro rail policy 

For all metro rail projects implemented with central assistance, the state should comply and operationalise United Metropolitan Transport Authority in the city in a year
Last Updated : 01 July 2022, 20:46 IST
Last Updated : 01 July 2022, 20:46 IST
Last Updated : 01 July 2022, 20:46 IST
Last Updated : 01 July 2022, 20:46 IST

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While work on the Silk Board-Kempegowda International Airport (KIA) metro line gathers speed, the government has serious issues in complying with the Metro Rail Policy, 2017.

The Phase 2A (Silk Board-KR Puram) and Phase 2B (Kasturinagar-KIA) components of the airport metro line were granted approval in April 2021, three years after the Centre adopted a policy requiring state governments to avail its assistance.

Under the policy’s equity-sharing model, the union government provides 20 per cent of the project cost if the state government is willing to meet certain prerequisites, out of which the Comprehensive Mobility Plan (CMP) is mandatory. Integrating different modes of transport is imperative to providing seamless commuting service, the policy says.

For all metro rail projects implemented with central assistance, the state should comply and operationalise UMTA (United Metropolitan Transport Authority) in the city in a year.

State officials admitted that the government is nowhere close to achieving the targets set by the UDD (Urban Development Department). It has delegated the CMP work to the Directorate of Urban Land Transport (DULT), but it has not quite comprehended UMTA. The draft Bengaluru Metropolitan Land Transport Authority (BMLTA) has been gathering dust for two years.

“The bill is under the active consideration of the government. In fact, the draft bill was a key component that helped get the union cabinet’s approval for the airport line. Till the approval, the government had a sense of urgency with regard to BMLTA,” a senior official said, refusing to comment further.

The CMP has several crucial components of urban transport planning from public transport, road development, pedestrianisation, multimodal mobility plan to a comprehensive parking policy, besides infrastructure.

To a question, another official said some of the works under the CMP were at various stages.

“The parking policy and transit-oriented development policy have been approved and are in the implementation stage. Due to the technical aspect, it may take some time. The BMLTA is required to integrate various plans and infrastructure,” the official added.

Urban Development Department Additional Chief Secretary Rakesh Singh was not available for comment.

However, an official in the department said the government was keen on taking up the infrastructure works in the CMP.

“The Peripheral Ring Road, high-density corridor and TenderSURE works have been given priority,” he said.

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Published 01 July 2022, 18:22 IST

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