Almost two months after all 13 companies that had shown an interest in the Mumbai Trans Harbour Link connecting Sewri and Nhava-Sheva failed to submit bids to build the ambitious sea link, the state government has shelved the project. The Maharashtra State Road Development Corporation has issued notices of retrenchment to five senior officers working on the bidding process, a clear indication that the government has decided to halt the Rs. 6,000 crore project. The officials have written to the MSRDC vice-chairman, requesting him to reconsider the decision. It may be recalled that the MSRDC had set up a team of five senior civil engineers for the 22km sea link. The five engineers, hired between October 2008 and January 2009, were operating from an office in Bandra. The team was working on the bidding process for the sea link, which has been in the planning stage for almost four decades now. But amid the global downturn, none of the 13 companies worldwide who bought bid documents turned submitted their bids in February.This came as a major setback for the corporation, which had been promised financial assistance by the MMRDA. Confirming the development, sources from MSRDC confirmed that since the trans-harbour link has been shelved, there was no need for extra staff.

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