Mumbai Buzz: MTHL toll is Rs 250 | Monorail merger with Mumbai Metro and more…

And in other news: 36000 trees planted by BMC; zero prescription policy to be implemented; lucrative IIT Bombay placements.

After much speculation over the amount of toll on the Mumbai Trans Harbour Link, the state government has finalised the toll amount as Rs 250 per car one way. Earlier it was expected that a one-way journey, which cuts the travel time considerably between Navi Mumbai and south Mumbai, would cost as much as Rs 500.

The 22-km long road, will connect Sewri in Mumbai and Chirale in Raigad and will have three exits. The longest sea bridge in India, it will reduce the travel time to 15 to 20 minutes from couple of hours. This engineering marvel will be inaugurated by prime minister Narendra Modi on January 12th.

Although Rs 250 is also considered to be a steep charge for the journey, officials argue that it has been one of the most expensive transport linkage projects. The cost of the project went up from Rs Rs 14, 712.70 crore to Rs 16,904.43 crore due to delays.

Source: Hindustan Times, The Indian Express

Monorail to merge with Mumbai Metro

mono rail
Due to increasing losses, it was decided to merge the monorail with Mumbai Metro. Pic: Suresh Deshwal via Flickr (CC BY-SA 2.0 Deed)

Even as Mumbai’s Monorail continues to make losses, the the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) has decided to merge the implementation unit of Monorail with the Maha Mumbai Metro Operation Corporation. Officials say this move will result in savings of Rs 40 to 60 crore annually. The MMRDA has ordered for 10 more rakes for monorail.

“At present, the monorail’s capital expenditure is ₹291 crores while the revenue expenditure is ₹252 crore, which includes expenses under heads like manpower, civil, administration, security and maintenance,” reported The Free Press Journal. It also said the losses for the financial year 2023-24 were estimated at a staggering Rs 529 crore.

Source: The Free Press Journal

36000 trees planted by BMC in Andheri

To increase the green cover, the Brihanmumbai Mahanagar Palika (BMC) has planted as many as 36,210 trees in the K-East ward of Mumbai, that in Andheri in the past year. The trees have been planted in Miyawaki style in Kanakia and Veravali areas.

Due to rapid development and urbanisation, coupled with incessant construction for various infrastructure projects, most of the city is witnessing increased pollution and several health related impacts of the same.

The BMC’s plant department has been taking up various initiatives including afforestation. They have planted a total of 38,775 trees from 2019 till 2023.

Source: Mumbai Live, Loksatta

Read more: Has the Mumbai Metro helped reduce traffic at all?

Zero prescription policy at civic hospitals from Jan 15

The ‘zero prescription policy,’ mooted by the BMC in November 2023, will be implemented from January 15th 2024, reported Loksatta, a well-known Marathi daily. Municipal commissioner and state appointed administrator Iqbal Singh Chahal has approved the proposal to procure additional medicines worth Rs 1000 crore.

In an earlier report, Hindustan Times said, “The move comes after an inquiry into the artificial shortage of medicines at BMC-run hospitals, which forced patients to buy them externally. The BMC aims to become the first municipal corporation in India to implement such a policy.”

Various reports have indicated that patients who come to civic-run hospitals end up spending a lot on diagnostic tests, medicines and medical supplies, bought from private pharmacies, during the course of treatment as the hospitals are in short supply.

Source: Loksatta, Hindustan Times

IIT Bombay placements: 85 offers with 1 crore package

IIT Bombay’s phase one of placement has brought good news and hope for graduating engineers. As many as 85 students have been offered a sweet deal of Rs 1 crore and above as their starting annual package. In the first phase of placements, 388 companies participated – both Indian and international.

Mid-day reported, “As per the data shared by the institute, a total of 1,340 offers were made till December 20, 2023, which resulted in 1,188 students’ placements… Job offers with international placements included a total of 63 countries, including countries like Japan, Taiwan, South Korea, Netherlands, Singapore, and Hong Kong.” The average annual salary for this round was Rs 24.02 lakh.

Source: Mid-day

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