Airport Metro will be back on track around Diwali: DMRC
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Says Reliance-backed concessionaire will continue operating line till dispute is resolved.
A day after the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) rejected the contract termination notice of Reliance-backed operator of Airport Express Line and referred the matter for arbitration, DMRC chief Mangu Singh on Saturday assuaged doubts over operations resuming on the line.
He said the services on the 22.7 km-long corridor were expected to resume around Diwali. "The repair work on the corridor is nearing completion. After we receive the necessary safety clearance, the operations would resume. We are hopeful that the Airport Metro will resume operations around Diwali."
The services on the Airport Metro line were suspended on July 8, after structural defects were detected on the line. Delhi Metro and Reliance Infra have been at loggerheads since the suspension of operations on the corridor.
The possibility of resumption of services received a jolt when Delhi Airport Metro Express Private Ltd ( DAMEPL) served a termination notice to the Delhi Metro. The concessionaire, in its letter dated October 8, sought termination of the concession agreement after services on the Airport Metro line remained suspended for 90 days. Terming the agreement financially non-viable, the concessionaire also requested for financial restructuring of the agreement.
However, the DMRC rejected the request and referred the agreement for arbitration. Mangu Singh also clarified that the line would continued to be run by the Reliance Infra-backed concessionaire. "The DAMEPL has maintained that they will run the Airport Line services pending resolution of the disputes through arbitration," he said.
The concessionaire, too, stated that they will continue to run the line. " The repair work executed by DMRC is nearing completion. We will recommence the operations on Airport Metro line soon after getting the necessary safety clearances. DAMEPL, as the concessionaire, will run the line," a DAMEPL spokesperson said.
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