Govt asked to provide Rs 415 cr for RRTS project in two months
New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Monday berated the Delhi government for “throwing its hands up” over contributing its share towards the two Regional Rapid Transit System (RRTS) corridors to Alwar and Panipat, and directed it to provide Rs 415 crore for the project within two months.
The Delhi government had expressed its inability to contribute funds for the RRTS project after which the apex court had directed it to place on record funds spent on advertisements in the last three years.
The RRTS project consists of semi-high speed rail corridors connecting Delhi to Meerut in Uttar Pradesh, Alwar in Rajasthan, and Panipat in Haryana.
Noting that the Delhi government has spent Rs 1,100 crore on advertisements in the last three years, the top court remarked the Arvind Kejriwal government is bound to pay the funds when the other states involved are paying for it.
“Your one year advertising budget is more than what you are giving for the project.
“We were constrained to pass the last order only on account of the NCT government throwing its hands (up) to contribute to the project. We put to the senior counsel that if Rs 1,100 crore budget can be spent on advertising in the last three financial years, then certainly contribution can
be made to the infrastructure projects,” A bench of Justices S K Kaul and Sudhanshu Dhulia said.
Senior advocate Abhishek Singhvi, appearing for the Delhi government, informed the apex court about the budgetary allocation made towards advertisements in the last three years.
Singhvi assured the bench that payment will be made towards the project but requested for the contribution to be allowed in instalments spread over a reasonable period of time. The National Capital Region Transport Corporation (NCRTC) is executing the project, a joint venture between the Centre and the states concerned.
The Delhi-Meerut project is already under construction, and the Kejriwal government has agreed to pay its share of the costs. However, the Delhi government has refused to share the financial burden for the remaining two stretches, citing a paucity of funds.
The top court had earlier slammed the Delhi government for expressing its inability to contribute towards construction of the RRTS project and directed it to furnish the details of money spent on advertisements in the last three financial years within two weeks. The funds were needed for construction of the RRTS stretch that will connect the national capital with Rajasthan and Haryana.