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New Delhi (Urban Transport News): The government has pulled up India’s leading automaker Tata Motors for delaying the delivery of electric buses to the transport departments of six cities and warned that the company could be blacklisted for future contracts.
The Tata Motors had won orders to supply 40 electric buses each to Jaipur, Indore, Lucknow, Kolkata, Jammu and Guwahati in March 2018. The company has delayed deliveries in all these cities.
China’s largest electric vehicle maker, BYD in a joint venture with Olectra, bagged contracts to supply electric buses in three of the 10 cities, while Ashok Leyland bagged the contract for Ahmedabad only.
Olectra had supplied 40 of the 100 buses in Hyderabad for which it had received clearances, although its contracts in Bengaluru and Mumbai were delayed due to legal hurdles.
“Around 80 buses order to supply Bengaluru has been canceled by BMTC. We have challenged this in the Karnataka high court. In Mumbai, our tender ran into a court case, where we got the clearance to supply buses only on March 15,” said Naga Satyam, Executive Director of Olectra.
Whereas Ashok Leyland has partially delivered the electric buses to the Ahmedabad city and the buses are under trial runs and will start passenger services in a month.
Sources said that the delay by Tata Motors was on account of battery issues and a “delay in the manufacturing process.” The Government has issued contracts under the first phase of a programme to promote the use of electric vehicles in the Cities.
Under the Faster Adoption and Manufacturing of (Hybrid) Electric Vehicles in India (FAME India) scheme, the Centre offered a 60% subsidy to cities to procure electric vehicles as outright purchases or on a supply-operate basis.
In December 2017, the Department of Heavy Industries had sanctioned Rs 440 crore to 11 states for the procurement of electric buses, electric taxis, and electric autos as a pilot project under FAME scheme.
The transport departments of various states now risk losing the subsidy if it is not claimed in time. Now the states have to decide the action against the company. Some states have levied liquidated damages on the company.
According to the guidelines, the deadline to claim their subsidies is nearing and can be extended maximum by 15 days or a month. Failing this, the unclaimed subsidies will lapse. The Ministry of Heavy Industries has called a meeting to ensure the timely supply of electric buses to the states.
Sources said that if Tata Motors fails to supply the electric buses by revised deadlines, the company could be barred from participating in tenders expected to be floated under the FAME-II scheme.
“In Lucknow, Tata Motors has supplied only one prototype, which is running alright. The deadline was August 2018. We have given them an ultimatum on supplying the remaining buses by May this year. The company has been fined with Rs 3.42 crore for the delay”, said an official from the Uttar Pradesh Transport department.
“The state had issued a notice after Tata Motors failed to deliver the buses on time. They have cited some issues with the batteries used in ebuses as the reason for the delay. The buses are expected to be delivered by April 20,” said an official from Indore’s city transport department.
The post Govt of India may blacklist Tata Motors for delaying delivery of e-buses appeared first on Urban Transport News.
This article first appeared on urbantransportnews.com
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