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Kerala Kaumudi Online
Friday, 30 September 2022 8.04 AM IST

Transport Minister Antony Raju explains reason for not taking up 250 electric buses allotted by Centre

antony-raju

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: State Transport Minister Antony Raju has explained the reason for not taking up 250 electric buses allotted to the KSRTC by the central government under the Fame India Phase-II scheme. The buses were not taken up due to high rates, said the minister.

According to the minister, the Phase-II scheme is not a scheme to allot buses for states. It is a scheme provided by the heavy industries department of the central government to provide electric buses under the GCC contract or wet lease system. As per the scheme’s condition, if implemented on a gross cost contract basis, then a subsidy of up to Rs 55 lakh will be provided per bus for running 9.1 lakh kilometres for 12 years. On the basis of this, the central government in 2019 had asked the state to invite tenders for 250 buses, including 100 buses each to Thiruvananthapuram and Ernakulam, and 50 electric buses to Kozhikode under the wet lease system. Based on this, tenders were invited but the lowest rate offered was Rs 75.90 per kilometre.

However, when electric buses are used for city services, they get only Rs 38 per kilometre, said the minister. Hence, if services are run as per the tender rates, then the buses would have to run at a loss of Rs 37.90 km. Considering the huge loss, a similar tender released in 2019 was cancelled by the government in 2020. Minister Antony Raju informed that he personally met the union minister and informed him about the adverse situation in the Fame-II project guidelines. The centre has made it clear that changes will be brought in the next scheme as the project has already been approved and other states have expressed interest in it.

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TAGS: ANTONYRAJU, EXPLAINS, REASON, 250 ELECTRIC, BUSES, ALOTTED, CENTRE, FAME INDIA
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