Mumbai: The much talked about Mumbai Metro — an ambitious project meant to boost public transport and improve east-west connectivity — is in for a further delay of a few months.

Launched by Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA), the 11.4 km Versova-Andheri-Ghatkopar metro has reached completion by 94.66 per cent, revealed Right to Information (RTI) activist Anil Galgali.

In spite of Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan and the MMRDA regularly pronouncing that the Metro was all set to start, it appears that the rail project can be inaugurated only after March.

The activist has been vigorously pursuing the progress of this project for the past four years and had asked the MMRDA regarding the status of completion of the project. “In a reply to my query, the Public Information Officer for the Mumbai Metro project gave a detailed reply about the progress of work on all 12 stations as well as the various deadlines set by the MMRDA.

“As per the reply, it can be understood that none of the stations are 100 per cent complete with Ghatkopar station being 90 per cent complete until the end of December 2013,” says Galgali.

The foundation stone was laid by Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh on June 21, 2006. The work order for the same was issued on January 21, 2008 but the actual work started on February 8, 2008. Up till now, the MMRDA had fixed various deadlines — July 2010, September 2010, July 2011, March 2012, November 2012, May 2013, September 2013 (Phase 1—Versova to Airport Road metro station) and December 2013 (Phase 2-Airport Road Station to Ghatkopar Metro station).

The project was estimated to cost Rs23.56 billion but by May 2012, the Board of Directors of Mumbai Metro One Pvt Ltd had pegged the cost at Rs43.21 billion.

Galgali feels that in spite of the delay, “the hurry for the inauguration needs to be avoided and the metro be launched only after 100 per cent completion of the project.”