Maharashtra Budget 2023: Funds For Nashik-Pune Semi-High Speed Rail, 'Setubandhan' Programme To Eliminate Level Crossing – Swarajya

The Mahrashtra government intends to speed up the completion of railway projects by adopting the policy of giving 50 per cent state share which was discontinued earlier.
The announcement was made by Deputy Chief Minister and Finance Minister Devendra Fadnavis while presenting the state budget for the fiscal 2023-24 on 9 March and will help extend rail connectivity to rural underdeveloped areas of the state.
The government will provide 50 per cent state share for four new railway lines namely Nanded-Bidar, Phaltan-Pandharpur, Khamgaon-Jalna and Varora-Chimur-Kampa.
Similarly, the state share of Rs 452 crore will be provided for 84 km new broad gauge Solapur-Tuljapur-Dharashiv line, announced the budget.
Rail Lines Under Construction
Work is currently underway for a number of rail line projects in the state, prominent being Ahmednagar-Beed-Parli Vaijnath, Wardha-Yavatmal- Nanded, Vadsa-Desaiganj-Gadchiroli and Nagpur-Nagbhid.
The state’s annual economic survey, tabled by Fadnavis in the assembly on 8 March has provided a detailed status of on-going railway works in the state:
The Union Budget for 2023 has already made a substantial provision of Rs 13,539 crore for the railway projects in Maharashtra.
Nashik-Pune Semi-High Speed Rail Project
The state government in the budget has assured adequate funds for the Nashik-Pune semi high-speed rail project. The project has already received “in-principal approval” from the Ministry of Railways.
A joint team of the state government and the Railways Ministry is currently preparing a technical appraisal of the project which will be submitted for the approval of the Union Cabinet.
As per the proposal prepared by Maharashtra Railway Infrastructure Development Corporation (MRIDC), the 235.15-km rail line will pass through three main districts of Maharashtra, ie, Pune, Ahmednagar and Nashik.
The train will stop at 24 stations — eight major and 16 small ones. At a speed of 200 kph, the distance between Pune and Nashik is expected to be covered in around two hours.
The semi high-speed rail link between Pune and Nashik will boost development of both the cities and provide seamless connectivity to the industrial zones of Pune and Nashik such as Alandi, Chakan, Khed, Manchar, Narayangaon, Sinnar and Satpur.
Gate Free Maharashtra
There are about 2,500 railway crossings in the state.
The budget has announced “Setubandhan” programme, under which flyovers, subways will be constructed at the level crossings.
At present 100 works are in progress and 25 flyovers will be commissioned by May 2023. Another 25 flyovers will be completed in 2023-24.
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