The tunnelling work for the East-West Metro near Bowbazar that has been stalled after some of the workers were found Covid-19 positive, is likely to be resumed next week, officials of Kolkata Metro Rail Corporation Limited (KMRCL) informed today.

The tunnelling work inside the tunnel near Bowbazar had resumed on June 19. But the tunnel boring machine, Urvi, had to be stopped on the way to Sealdah Station on July 7, after around 14 workers involved in the task were reported Covid-19 positive.

Before resuming the work, the tunnel boring machine was at a distance of around 800 metres from Sealdah Station. However, just before completing the remaining stretch of 500 metres from its destination, the tunnelling work had to be stopped once again.

Even the track laying work in tunnel along the riverbed of the Hooghly, which was expected to start soon has been halted for a while. According to sources, out of the total 175 workers that were to be engaged in the track laying work, some of them have been found Covid positive while the test results of some of them are still awaited.

According to KMRCL an official, the work along the remaining stretch between Bowbazar and Sealdah Station is likely to be started in the next few days. “The tunnelling work will be restarted following all norms of social distancing and other aspects of the COVID- 19 protocol,” said the official.

“The tunnelling work is expected to be resumed in five to six days,” he added. Meanwhile, a stretch of East-West Metro Project in New Town has come under the containment zone in the revised list of North 24-Parganas, issued yesterday.

The identified stretch, plot number 10, is a casting yard of the ITD-ITD Cementation JV in Rajarhat Action Area-II. The KMRCL officials have decided to keep the office closed on 21 and 23 July for sanitisation of the office premises.