Sreedharan factor daunts Kochi metro

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It appears that the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation has almost decided not to take up the Kochi Metro Rail project because it has too much work on hand already.

Sources close to the project say that the meeting between chief minister Oommen Chandy and DMRC’s principal adviser E. Sreedharan, on Wednesday, will be crucial.

Both the ruling front and the Opposition have been keen on retaining Mr Sreedharan, whose exemplary work on the Delhi metro when he was DMRC’s managing director has become legend.

There appears little scope for manoeuvring, since both Union minister Kamal Nath and Delhi chief minister Sheila Dikshit are not happy to extend DMRC’s services elsewhere.

Sources say Ms Dikshit is clear about not entertaining any further requests to seek the services of DMRC, which incidentally, had very recently posted around 50 staff in anticipation of it taking up the main work in Kochi.

Mr Sreedharan has insisted that he will be associated with the Kochi metro project only if DMRC is involved. The state government must now convince him to reverse his stand.

A top government official said on condition of anonymity that Mr Sreedharan will have to be given a technical team to take the project ahead.

He could be appointed the technical adviser after which it could take up inviting tender for a consultant and finally the international tender for taking up the main project work.

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