Weeks after it cancelled the tender ostensibly because bidders had disclosed their rates at the technical stage, Railways Monday re-issued the tender to manufacture 44 Vande Bharat trainsets in a new avatar in which 75 per cent of the components need to be of Indian origin and this time it will be a domestic tender.
In August, the Railways had cancelled a global tender it had floated the month before after it emerged that among the six candidates that had submitted financial bids was CRRC Pioneer Electric, in which China’s CRRC is a joint partner. The new tender will boost “Make in India”, said an official. The estimated value of the purchase could be between Rs 2500-3000 crore, he said.
Railways said that the winner of the tender will be selected through a computerised reverse auctioning process wherein companies still in the race following technical evaluation will be given an hour to reassess their rates quoted. This is after the computer automatically eliminated around 50 per cent of those quoting higher rates than others. The company quoting the lowest rate wins the bid. “This is perhaps one of the biggest tenders in reverse auction mode in Railways,” said a railway official.
As per a statement from Railways, this is the first big tender under revised DPIIT norms of Atma Nirbhar Bharat having at least 75 per cent domestic components.
The tender is for three-phase propulsion, control and other equipment along with the bogies for the 44 train sets. The ministry also said a pre-bid meeting for the tender will be held on September 29 and the tender will be opened on November 17. The bid document states that the train sets shall be manufactured at Integral Coach Factory, Chennai; Rail Coach Factory, Kapurthala; Modern Coach Factory, Raebareli. The government had earlier scrapped three global tenders for the project.
The August cancellation had come in the backdrop of rising tensions between India and China. The Railways had then said a fresh bid will be put out as per the revised Public Procurement (Preference to Make in India) order.
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