Haji Ali - Worli sealink snippets
Only two Indian firms with their multinational partners, out of the 17 who showed an interest in building the 3.6-km link between Worli and Haji Ali, have come forward to bid for the project that will be the second phase of the Bandra-Nariman Point link. Buying over the Bandra-Worli sealink, expected to be commissioned early next year, and building the Worli-Haji Ali link, is likely to cost Rs 4,100 crore. For the state government, this is the best that it can have in these recession-hit times. Just two of the 17 firms bidding for the showpiece project shows how the global financial crisis is likely to impact important infrastructure projects in the city. But the very fact that two firms have bid indicates that the project is on track and will see the light of day. Anil Ambani’s Reliance Infrastructure Limited, in partnership with Korean company Hyundai, and Hindustan Construction Company (with its two multinational partners, Liang and Samsung), bid for the project on Friday. HCC has already worked on the first phase—the Bandra-Worli stretch. The tender to build the next phase of the sealink from Worli to Haji Ali also includes the buy-back cost of the completed phase between Bandra and Worli—this will ensure that only one agency collects the toll for both the links in future. Bid conditions say the company that wins the bid will have to build the Worli-Haji Ali link in three years and recover the cost within a 50-year period. “The company quoting the lowest recovery period will win the bid,’’ said MSRDC chief engineer Sharad Sabnis. Some of the infrastructure giants, which had initially lined up to bag the project but finally did not turn up to submit their bids, probably due to the financial crisis, included Larson & Toubro, Shapoorji Pallonji, IL&FS, India Bulls, Tata Realty, GVK, Soma Enterprises and Gammon India. There were also some other problems that the bidding process faced. Several firms requested the state government twice during the past one month, after the 26/11 strike, to extend the bid submission deadline; they said their foreign partners were scared of coming to Mumbai. The bids were to be submitted by November 28 initially, which was later extended to December 8 and then finally to December 26. Companies had also requested that the bid condition of upfront payment of Rs 1,634 crore be modified because of recession.