Pune : Metro Service Between Nigdi to Katraj Gets Green Light, State Deputy Chief Minister Confirms

Pune Pulse
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Following the inauguration of two new segments of the Pune Metro, including the Pimpri to Shivajinagar stretch, State Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar announced a significant development for the residents of Pimpri-Chinchwad. Addressing a gathering at the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) meeting held at the Professor Ramkrishna More auditorium in Chinchwad on Friday, August 26, 2023 Pawar confirmed that the Pune Metro network would soon extend its operations up to Katraj, a long-standing demand of the local populace.

In response to a party worker’s query about the timeline for extending the Pune Metro service to Katraj, Ajit Pawar, the Deputy Chief Minister, revealed that not only would the Metro reach Katraj, but the state government, under his role as Finance Minister, would also contribute to the endeavor.

He stated, “The Pimpri-Chinchwad Municipal Corporation (PCMC) will provide its contribution for the Nigdi to Katraj Metro service. “As the Finance Minister, on behalf of the state government, I assure you of our readiness to contribute. I will also personally engage with the Prime Minister and the Home Minister to seek their assistance. The Pune Metro will run from Nigdi to Katraj,” he said.

Pawar further elucidated that the forthcoming Nigdi to Katraj Metro stretch would encompass a combination of elevated and underground sections based on feasibility. “Wherever possible, it will be an elevated track, and where necessary, we will opt for an underground route,” he detailed.

During the initial planning phases of the Pune Metro’s expansion from Pimpri to Swargate, citizens and activists consistently advocated for the route to extend from Nigdi to Katraj. This proposal aimed to serve the daily commuters traveling from Nigdi, Chinchwad, and Akurdi to Pune city. “Even five years ago, when the Metro project commenced, citizens and activists rallied for initiating the Metro journey from Nigdi to Katraj, bypassing these key areas,” stated Congress leader Rajendra Shelkhe.

Activist Amol Deshpande recollected, “In 2015, representing the Pimpri-Chinchwad Citizens Forum, we engaged with the then municipal commissioner, Shrikar Pardeshi, advocating for the Metro to commence from Nigdi.”

Acknowledging the significant number of daily commuters from Nigdi, Chinchwad, and Akurdi who journey to Pune, officials are optimistic about the positive momentum initiated by Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar. “According to our knowledge, the Metro proposal from Nigdi to Katraj is at the final stage of approval. We are awaiting the central government’s authorization. The groundwork for the Nigdi to Pimpri Metro stretch has been prepared,” shared municipal commissioner Shekhar Singh.

Shravan Hardikar, the Chairman and Managing Director of MahaMetro, highlighted that the proposal to extend the Metro from Pimpri to Nigdi and from Swargate to Katraj had been submitted to the central government. He revealed that queries were addressed and responses provided in compliance with the government’s concerns.

Detailing the financial aspects, Hardikar indicated that the proposed cost for extending the Metro from Pimpri to Nigdi was estimated at Rs 950 crore, while the Swargate to Katraj stretch amounted to Rs 3,500 crore. This discrepancy arose due to the latter section being predominantly underground, whereas the former would predominantly involve an elevated track. The expansion project’s progression reflects the synergy between administrative efforts and public aspirations in shaping the future of Pune’s Metro network.