Railway, MCA in dispute over maintenance of FOBs connecting Wankhede

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Western Railway has written to Mumbai Cricket Association (MCA) demanding payment for repairs of two foot overbridges (FOBs) used by people for entering Wankhede Stadium or face their dismantlement.

Western Railway had earlier written such a letter but had got no response from MCA, officials said.

The FOBs cater to half of North Stand, Sunil Gavaskar Stand (East Stand) and Vittal Divecha Stand and are built above railway tracks on the northern end of Churchgate.

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“We have written three to four letters and if the MCA does not respond this time, then WR will fix a deadline to dismantle the two FOBs,” WR chief public relations officer Ravinder Bhakar said.

IIT experts have suggested replacement or repair and one-year maintenance of the bridges, adding that MCA was not willing to pay for the repairs, added Bhakar. The FOBs were used by people watching games at the stadium and not railway passengers, and therefore the onus to pay for the repairs or replacement was on MCA.

WR has been auditing bridges above its tracks along with IIT experts after a portion of a road overbridge (ROB) collapsed in Andheri station on July 3 last year

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When contacted, a senior MCA official said vice president Amol Kale would take up the issue with Railway Minister Piyush Goyal. “We had incurred an expenditure of ₹1.75 crore for the repair of the two FOBs in the past. WR even gave us a letter stating the FOBs were okay. However, if they have found them to be unsafe, then we will ask them to share the cost of repairs or rebuilding,” the MCA official said.

Wankhede Stadium is scheduled to host an international T20 match featuring India and West Indies on December 6.

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