the role of former Delhi Metro chief and ex-railway officer E Sreedharan in the Kochi metro rail project. Sreedharan, 79-year-old engineer who is known as India’s metro man, made it very clear that he would take up the Rs 5,181-crore Kochi Metro only if Delhi Metro Rail Corporation implements the project. That made the state government’s earlier plan of getting an international bidding process aborted. The project is likely to be completed by 2016.
According to reports, urban development secretary Sudhir Krishna reportedly said in an internal board meeting that it would be difficult for the DMRC to take up the job in Kochi, which in other words means Sreedharan minus DMRC would be handicapped in executing the project on time. Urban development secretary is the ex-officio chairman of the metro projects including DMRC where the Central government has 50% share.
The opposition leaders in Kerala have now made it a political issue raising the question whether it was a ploy to keep the metro man away from the project. Some believe it could be the manifestation of anger of a few IAS officers who could not digest Sreedharan becoming synonymous with metro rail projects in India. Currently, some of the metro rail projects like Bangalore, Chennai and Jaipur are being headed by IAS officers.
Jose, who was the special officer and then MD of Kochi Metro Railway Project, is believed to be a big opponent of Sreedharan’s entry into Kochi project and taking away all the credits. A masters in business administration (MBA), Jose is currently the transport secretary in the state.
Between 2000 and 2004, Jose was a director in union defence ministry before leaving for Moscow to take up the post of counsellor in Indian embassy in Russia. Jose was stationed in Russia for three years.