The contract for developing Pune metro rail project’s Line-3, which is expected to cost nearly ₹8,313 crore, has been awarded to a consortium of Tata Realty and Infrastructure Urban Transport and Siemens Project Ventures GmbH, the two companies confirmed in a statement. Devendra Fadnavis, the Chief Minister of Maharashtra, had handed over the letter of award to Tata Sons chairman N Chandrasekaran and Siemens Group CEO, Ralph Hasselbacher in Mumbai.

Pune Metropolitan Region Development Authority’s (PMRDA) metropolitan commissioner, Kiran Gitte stated that the latest the consortium is allowed to commence the project is by June 2019, though Fadnavis advised them to commence, if possible, by January 2019. Tata Projects is supposedly the engineering partner for the project, as per the companies’ statement.

The project will be India’s first metro rail venture being developed in a public private partnership (P-P-P) model after the New Metro Rail Policy of 2017, sources suggested. For the record, the Line-3 will be a 23.3 km long elevated line, originating from Hinjewadi Rajiv Gandhi Infotech Park and going to Shivajinagar via Balewadi. The line will reportedly have 23 stations on its route.

According to Banmali Agrawala, President for Infrastructure, Defense and Aerospace, Tata Sons, they had the capabilities and expertise required to deliver long-term results for large infrastructure projects such as this one. He expressed confidence in the group’s ability to complete and deliver the project as per the scheduled timelines.

Siemens MD and CEO, Sunil Mathur believes the project will have a positive impact on the quality of life for people living in Pune. For the uninitiated, Hinjewadi is known as the fastest growing IT hub in Pune, where nearly 400,000 people are provided employment.

Girish Bapat, Guardian Minister of Pune had given further information regarding the project, saying PMRDA, which is the project developer, will help to generate the 40% viability gap fund from the Centre and the State government. The remaining funds will be raised by the Tata-Siemens joint venture, he added.