Union Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar Thursday wrote to Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal questioning the delay in the use of the Centre’s FAME funds by the Delhi Transport Corporation to procure electric buses for the city’s public transport system.
The Centre had launched the Faster Adoption and Manufacturing of Hybrid & Electric Vehicles (FAME) scheme in 2015 for the country’s transition to clean mobility. The phase II of the scheme is in force currently.
Javadekar wrote that the DTC was sanctioned 40 electric buses in the phase I of the scheme. “Unfortunately, the deployment of these 40 buses did not take place,” he said.
Under the FAME II scheme, the Delhi government was provided financial support for the procurement of 400 more electric buses, out of which the DTC’s share was 300 while the rest was sanctioned for the Delhi Metro. The corporations were expected to issue supply orders by January 15, 2020.
Javadekar pointed out that the DMRC managed to issue the supply order by December 2019, but the DTC could not. It was given an extension till December 31, 2020.
“It is requested that this opportunity may now be fully utilised and the supply order may be placed well before the last date,” Javadekar wrote.
According to DTC records, the corporation is currently evaluating the price bids received from two vendors for the 300 e-buses under the scheme. Meanwhile, Javadekar also alleged that no Delhi government agency participated in the Department of Heavy Industry’s Expression of Interest in setting up charging stations for e-vehicles.
“In case of other states, many state government agencies have been sanctioned the charging stations. I request to you to expedite the deployment of electric buses as sanctioned to the DTC and take benefit of the Government of India scheme to check vehicular pollution in Delhi,” he added.
The Delhi government did not respond to requests for a comment.
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