CNG, diesel buses to ply on Ahmedabad BRT

May 7th, 2008 - 1:38 pm ICT by admin  

Ahmedabad, May 7(IANS) The Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation (AMC) has decided to ply buses running on compressed natural gas (CNG) as well as diesel on the Bus Rapid Transport (BRT) system here, an official said. “We have now decided to use a mix of CNG as well as Euro-III diesel buses to ease out financial costs,” said Municipal Commissioner I.P. Gautam Tuesday.

He told media persons that AMC is veering towards diesel buses as “our purpose is to provide public transportation at affordable price”.

In contrast to the earlier stance of using only CNG-run buses on the BRT route, the AMC decision to use a mix of CNG as well as Euro-III diesel buses seems to be a major re-think over financial costs.

“A CNG bus now costs around Rs.75 lakh (Rs.7.5 million) from the earlier Rs.44 lakh (Rs.4.4 million) which is quite high. We have to look at the viability and affordability factor,” he said.

He said that the AMC was looking for the best option under the circumstances. “We are working on it and we have told the government (that) diesel was one option,” he said.

It is re-issuing tenders for new BRT buses by the weekend. It had cancelled its tenders last week citing high rates by the operators.

The fresh tender process would provide an opportunity to the operators and Tata Motors, a bus manufacturer, to reconsider their terms. The company had put a condition that the buses would have to be procured through its dealers and not directly.

“(At the) last moment Tata Motors decided its dealers would quote the price,” said Gautam. Tata Motors alone had the capacity to supply buses in bulk and AMC would like to wait and see, he added.

He told IANS that re-issuing of tenders would not delay the scheduled commissioning of the BRT system, which is Aug 15 this year.

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