Land Acquisition Begins for Mumbai – Ahmedabad HSR Line

The National High Speed Railway Corporation Limited (NHSRCL) has started the process to acquire land for the 508 km Mumbai – Ahmedabad High Speed Rail (bullet train) project. The line’s alignment passes through 9 districts in Gujarat and 3 districts in Maharashtra, and land acquisition plans for roughly 1100 hectares (2718 acres) have been submitted to each district administration with an aim to hand out final compensation packages by March 31, 2018.

During the project’s inauguration in September, the central government’s press release indicated that a survey of the route’s alignment was performed aerially using Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR) technology, and geotechnical investigations along the route had been “substantially completed”. Around the same time, tribals and farmers from 24 organizations across both states submitted a joint memorandum to the Prime Minister’s Office to protest against the acquisition of their lands. Just last week, villagers in Palghar, Dahanu and Virar chased out officials from the revenue department after the local administration had barred the sale/transfer of land earmarked for the project.

Now here’s the part which matters most – the bidding process to appoint contractors, which starts with a notice inviting tenders, will begin only after a significant portion (two-thirds) of land is acquired. In an interview with the India Today, a senior railway official had this to say –

Tenders cannot be floated unless 60 to 70 per cent of the land is acquired. As per the Japanese practice, actual construction work can be started only after getting possession of the land. This essentially aims at ensuring uninterrupted work.

Model of Sabarmati Station (in yellow) – see project information – Photo Copyright: PMO India

The line is planned to be divided up into 7 civil packages (sections) with one package allotted just for the construction of the line’s underground southern terminal at Mumbai’s Bandra Kurla Complex (BKC), another one for the 21 km Thane – BKC underground section, and the rest 5 for the elevated corridor between Thane and Sabarmati in Ahmedabad.

For more updates, check out the High Speed Rail section of The Metro Rail Guy!

– TMRG

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Global traveler who prefers mass rapid transit

9 Responses to "Land Acquisition Begins for Mumbai – Ahmedabad HSR Line"

  1. Yash Mhadgut says:

    1. I read somewhere is newspaper, IR (Western Railways) has ample land in Bandra for construction of Terminal station.
    2. Also Bandra will become accessible due to Line 2B from BKC.
    3. Routing via Thane is a mess. Borivali is the most suitable station as a stop for Bullet train. Borivali-Thane transport (AC buses) is very good. Also, a metro line can be constructed under national park to Thane is required.
    4. Thus Bandra Borivali section will be underground running below existing WR so no land acquisition problem.
    5. Dahisar- Mira Road West is the best place to get the bullet train from Underground to Elevated. No land acquisition hurdles.
    6. Above point will eliminate need for Underwater tunnel below vasai creek/ ulhas river.
    7. Thus these above mentioned points can reduce project cost by huge difference.

    Reply
    • TMRG says:

      Interesting points. I believe a station at BKC would be more lucrative to business travelers as opposed to one at Bandra, even with metro connectivity planned between the two.

      Another follower on Twitter also questioned the rationale behind routing via Thane opposed to via Borivali. I believe there are two reasons, which are purely conjectures at this point –
      1) Thane’s location makes it a convenient launch pad from where a future Mumbai – Nashik – Aurangabad – Nagpur line’s physical infra can branch off.
      2) Routing the HSR line’s tunnel beneath Line-3’s 19m deep tunnel at Bandra East towards its terminal station at BKC will increase costs.

      Reply
    • Probal Kundu says:

      Support your view .

      Reply
  2. VFS says:

    Has maharashtra government agreed to give BKC plot? That is one big mess.

    Reply
    • TMRG says:

      Kind of. In September, they issued a government resolution (GR) asking the railways to explore the viability of alternate sites at BKC and Dharavi. If those weren’t viable, then they’re ready to part with 0.9 hectares of land with the condition that its land value be included in the state govt’s share of Rs. 5000 crores towards the project.

      Reply
    • Rohan says:

      The state govt will eventually, one way or the other. I don’t think any BJP CM has the audacity to scuttle a project that is the brain child of their big boss Narendra Modi. The state govt is probably just negotiating for a better deal.

      Reply
  3. Shrinivas says:

    Great that you will be tracking the HSR line as well. It looks like a pipe dream at the moment. But if anyone can do it, it has to be this government.

    Also it has to be a larger network then just Mumbai – Ahmedabad for it to be really useful.

    Reply
  4. Ashish says:

    Great, we really need to reform our land acquisition process. No infrastructure is without delays in India, mainly due to land acquisition. When do you hope the full Mumbai to ahmedabad line will be operational?

    Reply
  5. anjan says:

    Man you should be given padma award for tracking these many projects.

    Reply

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