Sources said that as per the agreement, the firm was supposed to deliver the e-buses in two lots but it has already delayed the delivery.
TOI tried to contact representatives of the e-bus manufacturing unit but did not get any response. Sources said that the firm is under pressure to deliver e-buses to Pune and Mumbai cities that have placed bigger orders. Delivery of the first lot of 25 buses – as per letter of acceptance (LOA) by the firm – should have been made on September 20. “As per LOA, the second lot of 15 buses is supposed to be delivered by November 19,” a senior official from the transport department said.
In a letter to the firm, the NMC’s transport manager and deputy municipal commissioner Ravindra Bhelave pointed out that the first lot of 25 buses should have been delivered by 390 days from the date of LOA. For the remaining 15 buses, the time period was 450 days.
The BJP-ruled NMC had refused to accept 100 electric buses being sponsored by the department of heavy industries and public enterprises, owing to its precarious financial condition. Instead it decided to procure only 40 buses under Phase-II of FAME (Faster Adoption and Manufacturing of Hybrid and Electric vehicle).
So far, the NMC has received Rs 3.60 crore (of the Rs 18 crore) as it had shortlisted 40 midi e-buses and is receiving Rs45 lakh subsidy for each bus.
The NMC will get second and third instalments of Rs7.2 crore each after all 40 e-buses are inducted.The midi bus procured from the firm costs around Rs1.49 crore each and the cost of procuring all e-buses comes to around Rs 60 crore.
The NMC has signed a MoU with the firm to operate the buses.
To a query, official sources said NMC has also identified a depot at Khapri. The firm will develop infrastructure, including 20 charging stations. After 10 years on build and operate basis, the facility will be transferred to NMC.