IT, industries and municipal administration minister K.T. Rama Rao on Thursday said from the floor of the Assembly that the expansion of the Metro Rail to the Old City will be begin soon.

He was responding to queries from Congress members Bhatti Vikramarka and D. Sridhar Babu with regard to deviations from the terms and conditions of the Memorandum of Understanding and delay in completion of the Metro Rail project, as well as alleged misappropriation of funds in the project.

He said that there was no delay in completing the work and expansion to the Old City was delayed because of land acquisition problems.  

He claimed that the Hyderabad Metro Rail was the second most successful project of its kind in the country, after the Delhi Metro Rail, and in the two years since its inception, three lakh people are using it every day.

He said

Congress MLAs should not launch an unnecessary campaign against the Metro and should travel in the Metro once and then they will realise how good and safe it is. Former Governor Narasimhan, the Chief Minister and other ministers have all travelled on the Metro.

He said the Chennai Metro still has only about 75,000 passengers daily and the fares of the Hyderabad Metro are cheaper than State RTC buses.

He said that the alignment of the Metro route passing before the Assembly and Public Gardens was slightly modified as the earlier alignment was damaging the Martyrs' Memorial opposite the Assembly building.

The minister pointed out that there were 370 cases of land acquisition against the Metro project during the Congress government and “we resolved almost all the cases and completed the first and second phases”.

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