Delhi Metro to run Airport Express Line after Reliance Infrastructure walks out

Delhi MetroThe takeover of the was completed three days after Reliance Infra announced its pull out from the service.

Delhi Metro today took over operations of Airport Express Line even as Reliance Infrastructure, which ran the line, blamed DMRC's "persistent" failure to cure defects in the civil structure for termination of the concession agreement and claimed termination payment from it.

The takeover of the 22.7 km-line was completed three days after Reliance Infrastructure announced its pull out from the service.

The Board of Directors of DMRC had met to discuss the letter of Reliance (DAMEPL) dated June 27 intimating that they would stop operating the Airport Line from the night of June 30, and concluded that the notice was in violation of the

Concession Agreement and the ongoing arbitration proceedings.

However, the Delhi Airport Metro Express Private Limited (DAMEPL), a Special Purpose Vehicle of Reliance Infrastructure Ltd (RInfra), has said that they terminated the Concession Agreement with DMRC for the airport metro line nearly 9 months back, vide its notice dated 8th October, 2012.

"The termination clause had to be invoked by DAMEPL, as DMRC had persistently failed to cure the substantial defects in the civil structure designed and built by DMRC, within the period prescribed under the Concession Agreement, and on account of Material Breach and Event of Default by DMRC arising under the Agreement as a result thereof," a Rinfra spokesperson said.

According to the spokesperson, DMRC failed to make alternate arrangements for taking over the operations of the metro line, even after the termination of the Concession Agreement in October last year, adding DAMEPL was compelled to serve a final notice on DMRC to take over the operations with effect from July one, as it was not possible for them to continue the same indefinitely.

DMRC is now liable to pay DAMEPL a Termination Payment equal to 130 percent of the Adjusted Equity and 100 per cent of the Debt Due for the project, as the termination has arisen owing to DMRC's "Event of Default", the RInfra spokesperson claimed.

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