Odisha Seeks Execution Of MoU For 2 Railway Projects

BHUBANESWAR: Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Saturday urged Union Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu to sign two projects specific MoUs for Jeypore-Malkangiri and Jeypore-Nabarangpur railway lines.

In a letter to Prabhu, the Chief Minister said the signing of the memorandum of understandings (MoUs) would facilitate land acquisition and other time-consuming activities without further delay.

“Both these projects have been sanctioned in the Railway Budget 2016-17 and feature in the Pink Book as well.  As these two projects are pivotal for the State of Odisha to bring in development to the left wing extremist affected districts of Malkangiri and Nabarangpur, my Government has already offered financial participation in both these lines,” said the Chief Minister.

The state government has proposed to bear 25% of construction cost for the Jeypore-Malkangiri project. Moreover, 50% construction cost along with the provision of land free of cost for Jeypore-Nabrangpur project has been offered, he added.

Reminding the meeting between the two leaders at Naveen Niwas in April this year, the Chief Minister said Prabhu had consented to take up these two important works immediately.

“But even though four months have passed since the Railway Budget announcement, no further progress has been made because of non-formalisation of our offers through MoUs,” he added.

The state government and Railway Ministry are already executing 177 km of the Khurda Road-Bolangir new line project through a project specific MoU.

“In this project too, Government of Odisha is bearing 50% of construction cost along with land cost. Therefore, I would request your Ministry to immediately formalise our offers through two project specific MoUs similar to that of Khurda Road-Bolangir,” said the Chief Minister.