A meeting of Transport Committee was conducted on Tuesday wherein a resolution was adopted authorising civic body to go ahead with placing orders for the buses for which Central Government is ready to provide grants.
As per information, NMC had floated tender for acquiring electric buses, 40 in number, and M/s EVEY Transport Pvt. Ltd submitted its bids for running these buses at Rs 72.99/km. After opening the bids, NMC engaged in negotiations and subsequently the company lowered its rate to Rs 66.33/km. As per the policy, Union Ministry of Heavy Industries is providing grants to civic body for purchasing the electric vehicles. The aim is to reduce the operations cost for public utility vehicles. Further with induction of electric vehicles the burden of petrol and diesel would gradually reduce providing affordability and reducing expenditure for the civic bodies that are struggling to cope with mounting expenses. NMC as per information is going to get aid of Rs. 45 lakh per bus while actual cost of the vehicle is Rs. 1.48 crores.
The project is being pushed by Union Minister Nitin Gadkari who has already provided five electric buses to NMC. They are currently deployed by civic body for purpose of ladies special and designated as Tejaswini. Given the falling rates of solar energy even the cost of charging for these buses is very affordable plus they can run for long hours without need for recharging. Meanwhile, Narendra alias Balya Borkar, Chairperson, Transport Committee directed civic officials to immediately sign the agreement with Union Ministry of Heavy Industries for purchase of electric buses. He said that the induction of electric buses would improve the air quality in city and drastically improve the travelling for citizens. Borkar also instructed officials to ensure that all the contractual employees of Aapli Buses are paid remuneration as per standing rules.