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NHAI seek legal opinion for terminating contract after 16 months


AHMEDABAD: The National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) has sought legal opinion against GMR Group, which announced it intention of walking out of Kishangarh- Udaipur-Ahmedabad project 16 months after securing the order.

The project is estimated to have required an investment of Rs 5,387 crore. The Bangalore-based group had won the project in Western India through international competitive bidding at Rs 636 crore annual premium for 26 years.
“We are examining the case and based on the experts advise may resort to legal recourse,” a senior NHAI said here in the state.

“GMR Kishangarh Udaipur Ahmedabad Expressways Limited, a subsidiary of the company, has terminated the concession agreement entered into with NHAI for six laning of 555 Km Kishangarh-Udaipur-Ahmedabad highway,” the company said in a filing to the Bombay Stock Exchange.

Company sources said GMR terminated the contract on account of difficulties in taking up the project due to regulatory hurdles, including delays in environment clearance and land acquisition.

The company had won the project in September, 2011, through the international competitive bidding route. It is to be implemented through the Public Private Partnership (PPP) model on Design, Build, Finance, Operate and Transfer basis.

The infrastructure major currently has 4 annuity projects and 6 toll projects totaling 6,685 lane kms cross under its Highways business segment. Financial closure for the project was achieved in May 2012.