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New Delhi: Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, in her Budget 2020 speech, announced the Centre’s plan for Bengaluru suburban rail project. The finance minister said that the Centre will provide 20 percent equity for 150-km Bengaluru suburban railway network, while 60 per cent will be raised through external agencies.

The Bengaluru suburban rail project is aimed at reducing congestion in the city. The project, which is worth Rs 18,600 crore, has been pending for quite long.

The Centre in December last year had said that it was studying the project and would give its nod after getting details about land from the Karnataka government.

The Karnataka government has tendered a revised detailed project report, which recommended developing 55-odd suburban railway stations covering a distance of about 150 km. Bengaluru is struggling to cope with the ever increasing demand with its existing transportation network.

The state government has also proposed to carry out the work through the Rail lnfrastructure Development Company (Karnataka) Ltd (K-RIDE) and set-up special purpose vehicle to execute the rail project.

In the Budget 2020, Nirmala Sitharaman besides announcing the plan for Bengaluru’s train project, said that more Tejas-type trains will be started to connect iconic tourist destinations. She also said that large solar power capacities will be set up alongside rail tracks, on land owned by Railways.

The FM, unveiling another plan for the Railways, said that four stations and 150 trains will be developed under the public private partnership (PPP) model.

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