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Blog Entry# 3507492
Posted: Jun 09 (07:57)

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Jun 09 (07:57)   Politics hits BBSR rail station development

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Entry# 3507492   News Entry# 340262         Tags   Past Edits
Turning the Bhubaneswar railway station to a world-class one is hanging in balance as both the State and Union Governments are yet to decide the venue for signing a document for development.
It was earlier decided that an MoU would be signed on January 20, 2018 for taking up the project in two phases, which never materialised. About five months have already elapsed in the meantime. The State Government and the Ministry of Railways (MoR) are yet to decide when and where to sign MoU. The State Department of Housing and Urban Development (DoHUD), which is to take the lead, is maintaining an eerie silence over the matter.
State Government in its Smart City Improvement Programme has decided to fund development of the Bhubaneswar railway station into world-class. The State Government has agreed to construct a new station building entirely at its cost. It has made a budgetary provision of Rs 60 crore for the purpose.
After construction of the new building, two new rail lines and one new platform would be constructed by the Indian Railway at a cost of Rs 70 crore.
The State Government has roped in international city planner Subarna Jurang, Singapore, for development of a Multi Modal Hub taking the entire railway station and Station Square into consideration as a Smart City Project.
However, both MoR and State Government are not coming to a point as to when and where the MoU would be signed, resulting in uncertainty over construction. In such a situation, the cost escalation likelihood is worrying the authorities.
Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik had invited Railway Minister Piyush Goyal on May 21 to sign the MoU at Bhubaneswar. However declining the offer on May 23, Goyal invited Patnaik to New Delhi for the purpose. The State Government has not yet responded to the offer sent by Goyal. So, the stalemate continues.
As the State Government would be spending a lion’s share for development of the railway station, obviously the Chief Minister has opted for signing the MoU at Bhubaneswar. But as the MoR would construct the project, Goyal is harping on signing the pact at New Delhi.
Under this backdrop, who would sort out the tussle between the State Government and the Union Government is now a big question mark. Officials of the East Coast Railway and the DoHUD are sitting with their fingers crossed as political leaderships have to take the final call, sources said.

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