BJP, MVA clash over car shed, bullet train terminal

BJP-MVA clash over metro car shed escalates to fight over bullet train terminal

Fadnavis reacting to the decision to move the metro car shed, said that the decision was ridiculous and childish

Maharashtra CM Uddhav Thackeray and former Maharashtra CM Devendra Fadnavis. Credit: PTI Photo

The war of words between the Opposition BJP and the Maha Vikas Aghadi government over the shifting of Mumbai metro car shed from Aarey Milk Colony to Kanjur Marg escalated to a new level with the Uddhav Thackeray-government contemplating a car shed at Bandra Kurla Complex (BKC), where the terminal of bullet train would come up.

This left BJP's state unit fuming as the bullet train between Mumbai and Ahmedabad is the pet project of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

In fact, Leader of Opposition Devendra Fadnavis has stepped up attack on Thackeray and his MVA government after the Bombay High Court put on hold the Mumbai Suburban Collector order of transfer of Kanjur Marg land to the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority temporarily.

A couple of months ago, Thackeray had scrapped the erstwhile BJP-led government for construction of car shed inside the Aarey Milk Colony, which is a green lung of Mumbai and shifted it to Kanjur Marg salt-pan land.

Thackeray’s close aide and state’s Urban Development Minister Eknath Shinde was quoted saying that the Bombay High Court order is being studied and the government has asked to study the land at the Bandra Kurla Complex.

"There are reports in the media about a BKC plot being one of the alternative sites. The plot is being considered," Shiv Sena chief spokesperson Sanjay Raut said.

Reacting to the development, Fadnavis, a former Chief Minister, said: “This is ridiculous and childish….you cannot behave like a Maharaja.”

“Shifting the car shed to BKC will increase the project cost multiple times. Any such move will increase the annual maintenance cost by five folds and make the Metro venture non-feasible and non-starter.”

He went on to add that the bullet train will need only 500 sq metres of land and the terminal would come three levels below the ground level. Besides, the place above has been earmarked for the International Financial Centre.

Senior BJP leader Ashish Shelar said that the Shiv Sena was opposing every development project.  “They opposed the Mumbai metro rail project in Girgaon, then Samrudhi Super-Communication Highway, Coastal Road, Wadhawan port, Mumbai-Delhi corridor,” Shelar said.

In an indirect reference to Thackeray and his son who is the state’s Environment Minister, Aaditya Thackeray, he said: “Mumbai’s development projects are being affected because of an ‘ahankari raja’ and ‘vilasi rajputra’,” he said.