Nagpur: The Maharashtra government on Wednesday assured the Assembly that it would provide funds for the proposed Railway Over Bridge (ROB). Which will replace the existing British period structure built in 1927 in Ajni. Which is in very dilapidated condition.
Also replying to a question by MLA Mohan Mate during Question Hour, Industries Minister Uday Samant has said that the government has already issued tenders worth Rs 188.72 crore.
“There was some confusion over who would build the bridge – the Railways or the Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC). Therefore, it was decided that the Maharashtra Rail Infrastructure Development Corporation Limited (MRIDC), A joint venture between the Ministry of Railways and the Government of Maharashtra will build the bridge. We will start work soon,” he said.
Former foster minister Nitin Raut has also asked the government whether any fund has been received in any way for the six lane cable stay bridge and when the work is going to start. Uday Samant has also replied to them that the funds have not been released yet, but the government is going to provide sufficient funds for the project.
MLA Vikas Thackeray has also asked whether the existing bridge will be closed for traffic and who is going to be responsible for accidents on the same stretch.
Mate pointed out that the existing Ajni railway over bridge
flatly refusing to close the bridge to traffic, Uday Samant also informed that currently there is a ban on heavy vehicles like trucks and buses and only cars and two-wheelers are allowed to ply.
Even before this, Mate pointed out that the existing Ajni railway over bridge was a very important infrastructure connecting South and Central Nagpur, but it was in a very dilapidated condition. He also said that the bridge has been closed for heavy vehicles on the recommendations of the Visvesvaraya National Institute of Technology (VNIT). He also sought an answer as to how much it would cost to construct the new ROB and by when it would be completed.
The National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) under Union Minister Nitin Gadkari had already planned to build a railway over the bridge which was also a part of the proposed Inter-Modal Station (IMS) at Ajni worth about Rs 13,000 crore. When environmentalists protested against the project and even filed a case in the Nagpur bench of the Bombay High Court, the minister canceled the project altogether.