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'Disregarding Her Efforts': TMC to Skip Metro Inauguration After Centre Doesn't Invite Mamata

File photo of Bengal Chief Minister and TMC supremo Mamata Banerjee.

File photo of Bengal Chief Minister and TMC supremo Mamata Banerjee.

Union Railway Minister Piyush Goyal will inaugurate the first phase of the East West Metro corridor connecting Sector V with Salt Lake Stadium on Thursday.

Kolkata: Standoff between the state and the Centre continues as the Trinamool Congress (TMC) leaders decide not to attend the inauguration of the much-awaited East-West Metro Railway Project (first phase) on Thursday. That Mamata was not invited and her name was missing from the invitation card has irked party leadership.

Three leaders including TMC MP Dr. Kakoli Ghosh Dastidar, state Fire and Emergency Services Minister Sujit Bose and Mayor of Bidhannagar Municipal Corporation Krishna Chakraborty were invited for the inaugural ceremony and were sent invitation cards.

Official invitation was also sent to them by the Railways but all the three leaders have decided to skip it because Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee was not invited by the Metro Railways.

Speaking to the News18, TMC MP Dr. Kakoli Ghosh Dastidar, said, “Our Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee planned the East West Metro Corridor. Urban Railways was her idea and she worked hard to get the money sanctioned. The work was started by her and now they are disregarding her effort. She was not invited and therefore we are also skipping the event.”

Union Railway Minister Piyush Goyal will inaugurate the first phase of the East West Metro corridor connecting Sector V with Salt Lake Stadium on Thursday. Union Minister Babul Supriyo will also be present besides senior Metro officials.

Around 5 PM, Union Railway Minister will flag off the inaugural run on the 4.88-km section.

On February 14, 2020, the Metro service will be open for regular commercial services, which will connect Sector V, Karunamoyee, Central Park, City Centre, Bengal Chemical and Salt Lake Stadium stations.

The East West Metro corridor between Sector V and Howrah Maidan stations comprises both elevated viaduct covering 5.8 km and an underground section of 10.8 km.

This is for the first time in India tunnels were made under the Hooghly river to connect the twin cities of Kolkata and Howrah.

The extension of the project suffered a major setback in August, 2019 after buildings developed cracks while some collapsed in Central Kolkata’s Bowbazar area when an aquifer burst during tunnelling work.

Recently, the work was resumed after getting a green signal from the Calcutta High Court.

Earlier completion target of the project was June 2021 but now the 16.6-km-long rapid transit system, connecting Kolkata and Howrah will be ready by 2022. “Out of 10.9 KM stretch, we have completed nearly 9.8 km of underground section of the corridor,” a Metro official said.