While the fate of the suburban rail network hangs in balance – being tossed around between the Centre and the State – the proposed Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) to implement the Rs 22,242-crore project is closer to reality. It will begin works related to the suburban system before another Detailed Project Report gets readied.
K-RIDE (Karnataka Infrastructure Development Enterprise), a joint venture between the Centre and the State, had been tasked with setting up B-RIDE.
The Railway Board has sent a letter saying its nod was not required to set up SPV while the state has got permission for it from both its law and finance departments. When this comes through, B-RIDE can come into being through a formal process at the Registrar of Companies with an initial investment of Rs 2 crore.
Five major projects totalling Rs 1,745 crore which have already been sanctioned for the project in January 2018 will be taken up by the SPV. Urban Development Department is set to introduce an amendment so that the Chief Administrative Officer, Constructions of South Western Railway, can take up five projects already sanctioned.
Among the works that are already sanctioned are the Rs 424 crore project between Baiyappanahalli and Hosur which comprises doubling, electric traction and automatic signalling; 21.7 km line (Chord Line) between Yesvantpur-Lottegahalli-Hebbal-Banaswadi-Baiyappanahalli-Channsandra at a cost of Rs 170 crore; automatic signalling between Baiyappanahalli-Yesvantpur-Tumukuru, Bengaluru-Mandya and Yesvantpur and Yelahanka for Rs 205 crore, conversion of 15 DEMU rakes to MEMU ones at Rs 56 crore and procurement of 11 MEMU rakes at a cost of Rs 400 crore.