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PM Modi inaugurates key infrastructure projects in Pune including Metro rail, hails their completion in record time

PM Modi in Pune said, "The most important thing for the development of modern infrastructure in any country is speed and scale. But for decades, we had such systems that the completion of important projects used to take a long time,"

Prime Minister Narendra Modi was in Maharashtra’s Pune on Sunday. He was in the city to inaugurate several development projects related to accelerating mass transportation systems in Pune. These include the inauguration of a 12-km track of Pune Metro, laying the foundation of the Mula-Mutha Riverfront Project and the launch of over 143 e-buses dedicated to the city among others. The significance of these projects not only lies in the fact they promise a sustainable and environment-friendly future but also in their timely execution in record time.

Today, Pune stands at the cusp of being the historical and cultural capital of Maharashtra and also a smart city in the making. The city accommodates the running of the highest number of two-wheelers recorded in the country while it stands at 5th position in the Swacch Sarvekshan Index.

PM Modi in his inauguration address remarked, “The city of Pune has always been famous for its cultural, spiritual and nationalist aspects. Taking into consideration the aspirations of a rising Pune, we have focussed on infrastructure to facilitate this change”. Here is a glimpse of key projects inaugurated/launched by Narendra Modi on Sunday.

Pune Metro

Launched in 2016 during the Devendra Fadnavis-led NDA govt, the work for Pune Metro kick-started after being taken over by Maha Metro for execution. Metro rail for Pune had been a long-standing demand among Puneites while it faced many obstructions and allegations regarding the ways of implementation. After PM Modi launched the project in 2016, a master plan was readied after taking into consideration the environmental, economical, urban and historical aspects of the city.

Today, PM Modi inaugurated a 12-km stretch of the total project covering a length of 33.2 km. Modi flagged off the run from Vanaz to Garware section and PCMC to Phugewadi section by buying a personal ticket himself before boarding the metro. While aboard, he interacted with students from the city who usually take bicycles to go to school. The North-South Corridor of Pune Metro from PCMC to Swargate is a hybrid route with an 11.5 km elevated track and a 6 km underground track.

To this date, Pune Metro stands as the fourth metro functional in the state after Mumbai, Thane and Nagpur. It employs a one-of-a-kind system where 11.19 MWp Solar panels are assembled on rooftops which will result in energy cost savings of ₹20 crores per annum.

Pune Riverfront Development Project

The 1100-crore Riverfront Development Project in Pune entails creating a continuous public realm and flood treatments across a 44 km stretch of the three rivers in the city – namely Mula and Mutha. The river rejuvenation and cleaning project aims to reduce the risk of flooding and at the same time enhance the connection of the city with the river. Despite being based on a master plan aimed at respecting the ecological and social aspects of the site, climate activists and organisations including Greta Thunberg’s Fridays for Future attacked to halt the project.

The Pune Municipal Corporation, however, went ahead with the project while the work for the first phase of the project is already started. PM in his inaugural speech stated, “When development projects related to protecting our rivers are laid, it is only then that the people realise the value of every drop of water,” The Pune riverfront development project is based on the Sabarmati River project in Ahmedabad which stands as one of the first successful riverfront projects laid in the country.

Statue of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj at PMC

On Sunday, PM Modi’s visit started with the inauguration of a 12-ft high statue of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj at the Pune Municipal Corporation building. In his speech, he counted the contribution of Shivaji Maharaj as the founder of the Maratha Empire and his role in nation-building. He said, “I got the opportunity to inaugurate a huge statue of Shivaji Maharaj earlier in the day. It will continue to inspire our young generation”

Launch of 143 e-buses and e-bus depot

The Prime Minister dedicated over 143 electric buses to the city of Pune. He also inaugurated the pilot e-bus depot in Baner under the multi-modal transport system scheme. With this, the number of e-buses operating in the city will rise to 250. The electric buses running in the city are manufactured by Olectra, the company which is operating e-buses in other cities of the country as well.

The AC buses running on electricity are zero-emission vehicles that will contribute to reducing the collective carbon footprint of the city. The lithium-ion battery installed in the buses enables them to travel 200 km on a single charge, depending on traffic and passenger load conditions.

Besides these, PM Modi also inaugurated the state-of-the-art art gallery dedicated to erstwhile noted cartoonist and artist R K Laxman. He will also be preceding over to flag the centenary-year celebrations of Symbiosis University in Pune.

“The most important thing for the development of modern infrastructure in any country is speed and scale. But for decades, we had such systems that the completion of important projects used to take a long time. This sluggish attitude has been affecting the development of the country as well,” commented Modi while addressing the host of Projects. He reiterated while giving a speech that received thunderous applause that his government is committed to delivering time-bound, sustainably viable and ecologically sensitive infrastructure projects.

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