The Karnataka government has once again dragged the issue to the Supreme Court by filing an affidavit that a consortium from the United States is ready to complete the work in only seven years.
The government, in its affidavit, has alleged that the company, Nandi Infrastructure Corridor Enterprise, executing the corridor is planning to profiteer from the illegal sale of land.
The affidavit added that the new consortium will also build a Rs 1,700 crore (Rs 17 billion) mono-rail system to facilitate passenger movement along the expressway. NICE has sought an interim relief against this affidavit and the case is set for a hearing on July 30.
A spokesperson for NICE said that a third of the work has been completed and they will be able to complete the work in two years if they get the land required.
"We have completed work on whatever land was provided to us. There are various litigations in the various courts and it takes time. We are helpless in this scenario as we need court clearances in each of the various cases to acquire land," the spokesperson added.
This is not the first time that the project has run into legal trouble since the work started in 1994. Allegations of land grabbing have been hounding the project as the promoters are trying to build townships along the corridor.
Time and again, various courts have ruled in favour of NICE. But this time around the state government has put forward an issue, which might be difficult to ignore.
The state government has added that the proposal by the new consortium in addition to the monorail element, also dilutes the various obligations of the government which would be more beneficial to the state and the people.
The affidavit noted that the land not required for the implementation of the project would fetch the state Rs 30,000 crore (Rs 300 billion) which it could channel into developing public infrastructure and for other welfare activities.
The new proposal has self-imposed penalties by undertaking to achieve financial closure within 18 months of signing the agreement and to pay the state government a penalty of Rs 3 lakh (Rs 300,000) for each day of delay.