Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Reddy fasttracks high-speed rail, ignores ABIDe

Reddy fasttracks high-speed rail, ignores ABIDe

Hemanth Kumar & Srikanth Hunasavadi. Bangalore

Within two days of a political compromise, the leader of the 15-day rebellion, Janardhana Reddy, refuses to blink.
Reddy, who is also tourism and infrastructure minister, on Tuesday sidelined the Agenda for Bangalore Infrastructure and Development (ABIDe) to fasttrack the high-speed rail-link (HSRL) project, while announcing that global tenders would be called within a week to develop HSRL. The project seeks to connect Bengaluru International Airport (BIA), in Devanahalli, with the city centre near BRV Theatre, cutting the travel time to 25 minutes. ABIDe has been opposed to the project, while the state's vision group on infrastruture development, headed by Capt GR Gopinath until two days ago, supports HSRL.
Reddy told reporters after a departmental review meet at his office: "We will issue global tenders within a week, and will finalise the tenders as early as possible. If all goes well, within a month we will start work on the high speed rail."

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