Wait for CNG buses gets longer

Wait for CNG buses gets longer

The proposal for sanctioning 400 CNG buses sent by the Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation (BMTC) to the Centre has not been approved as yet.

It appears like the commuters will have to wait longer than anticipated for the BMTC-run CNG buses to hit the City’s roads.

After the new government assumed office at the Centre, funds for 500 non-AC buses have been sanctioned and the Corporation has placed the order for the same with Ashok Leyland. However, there is no word yet on the CNG buses, even though the proposal was sent in June.

Previously, a proposal was sent for 310 Volvo buses and later a revised proposal was sent to instead have 400 CNG buses.

The officials were pinning their hopes to get the buses hereinafter the road blocks in gas pipeline which would supply CNG was also cleared.

To supply CNG to the buses, it was also decided by the BMTC to set up the facility at two bunks near two BMTC bus depots. However, now that almost three months have passed and with no word from the Centre, the officials of the BMTC have no option but to wait.

BMTC officials said that the Ministry of Road Transport, Highways and Ministry of Heavy Industries together were working on pushing the States to adopt more electric and hybrid buses.

A senior official said, “We are awaiting the approval of funds under the JnNURM from the Centre as its not possible for us to spend. Once the sanction comes, within three to four months, we will be ready to roll out these buses.”

It is pertinent to mention that the BMTC had been planning on CNG buses for the past few years and recently, the Transport Minister Ramalinga Reddy had even said that in the next ten years, CNG buses would outnumber other buses both in the KSRTC and the BMTC fleet.

Even the KSRTC has a proposal for inducting about 70 CNG buses in its fleet after the BMTC gets the required nod from the Centre.

Globally, it is said that CNG buses, even though initially expensive, cause almost 80 per cent less air pollution than the diesel-run buses.

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