The Kadamba Transport Corporation limited (KTC) is hoping to launch electric vehicles (EV) in the state by March 2020.
“It takes about six months for the e-buses to be manufactured and delivered so we are expecting them by March 2020. We hope to launch them for Gudi Padwa, next year,” KTC general manager, Sanjay Ghate told TOI.
An expression of interest was submitted by KTC to the Central government in July under the second phase of the FAME India (Faster Adoption and Manufacturing of Hybrid and Electric Vehicles in India) scheme, initiated by the ministry of heavy industry (MoHI) to assist the state in the purchase of electric buses.
KTC placed a request for 250 electric buses and has received a green signal for fifty vehicles.
KTC invited tenders from potential bidders last month for the supply of 50 EVs to operate in Goa, and the allied infrastructure needed.
“We have floated the tender on September 26. On October 11, we will have the pre-bid meeting to discuss any technical difficulties so that our technical specifications match with the manufacturer’s,” Ghate said.
“After the pre-bid meeting we will change the technical specifications so that maximum bidders can participate. Once that is uploaded online, we will open technical bids on October 28. In that, whoever qualifies for the technical bid and the pre-qualification criteria like turnover, supply quantity, orders pending among others will be selected,” Ghate said.
“By November 5, we will open the financial bids and the order letter for the procurement of 50 EVs will be issued by November 15,” he added.
There are six companies in the country that currently manufacture electric buses. These are TATA, Ashok Leyland, BYD China, Futron, JBM-Solaris and Goldstone Infratech.
KTC is hopeful that the cost per EV may further decrease, enabling them to make a pocket-friendly purchase.
“The cost of e-buses has drastically reduced from Rs 2.2 cr each in 2017, to Rs 1.5 cr now, due to battery development. The manufacturers have now developed a lithium-iron battery as opposed to the former cadmium one,” Ghate said.
KTC is therefore contemplating to add more EVs to their fleet.
“If we get an affordable offer, we will order more buses on our own. We will only require the government’s permission to increase the number of buses from 50,” he said.
News Source : Economic times