Despite government-appointed directors taking over charge of Maytas Infra, its only key project Hyderabad Metro is once again in trouble with the Andhra Pradesh government weighing whether to take the project forward with or without Maytas.According to sources, the state government is more or less convinced that Maytas Infra would not be able to take the Rs 12,000 crore project forward on its own.  Though taken up on a public-private partnership model, the company had agreed for a reverse grant to pay the government a certain amount without opting for viability gap funding. However, after its key promoter and Satyam Computer founder B Ramalinga Raju confessed to financial fraud Maytas Infra too was caught up in the ensuing storm.

The company is being probed for fund diversion from Satyam. Maytas Infra failed to achieve financial closure for the Hyderabad Metro by March 17, the deadline for fixing up funds. Citing difficulties, the company had sought extension of the deadline. Though the government is yet to take a decision on that, sources said the scope for Maytas to raise funds looks limited. "For about Rs 1,700 crore loans that it has, it is seeking a debt restructuring and its potential to raise further debt looks unlikely," an official source said. Given this situation, the Andhra government is learnt to have been examining options to take the project forward without having to depend on Maytas. "The state government sees the metro as a prestigious project. It can't wait for Maytas to come out of troubles... There are options to take it forward," an official said.However, one source said, the government is working on three options.One is to ask the Centre to fund the entire project.

The other option is to ask the Hyderabad Metro consortium, including Maytas, Nav Bharat, Ital Thai and IL&FS, to change the lead partner. "Currently, Maytas is the lead partner. Since its ability to raise funds is under question.. if any of the other partners come forward to take the responsibility, the project can be reworked," a source said. The third option, which is said to be under active consideration, is to cancel the bid awarded to the Maytas consortium and go in for re-tendering. "We are yet to take a decision. But we definitely want to explore the option of looking for central support to fund the project," an official said. Analysts feel Hyderabad metro remains a lifeline for Maytas Infra and would have a significant impact on the company if it is allowed to continue with the project. The existing pipeline of Rs 13,000 crore projects would not match the single metro project considering the by-products the project would offer."It is not just the metro Maytas would be developing. There is a significant real estate value along with the project. Losing this project would be a back-breaker for the ailing company," a source said.