The NMMT Committee has approved a proposal presented by the administration to hire 100 buses on BOT basis from July this year. If one goes through the proposal, there seem to be compelling indications of how the contractor will make huge gains while NMMT stands to loose Crores of Rupees. The proposal on the last page of the NMMT Budget states that NMMC will hire 100 buses from a contractor. The income of the buses has been calculated from Rs. 24.30. This is the amount that NMMT has earned per kilometer last year. But doubts of how the proposal will benefit one contractor is evident from Page 3 of the NMMT Budget where the civic transport undertaking shows that there average revenue of Rs. 24.30 per km. comes from the total kilometers run by 276 NMMT buses. However fact is that never has 276 NMMT buses run on the roads. Most of last year the number of maximum NMMT buses that run on the roads were 170 buses. NMTV News met NMMT Chairman Vishwanath Patil and General Manager Jitendra Papalkar. When we asked NMMT Chairman Vishwanath Patil when the number of buses increased from 170, he said that it increased in August – September while the General Manager Jitendra Papalkar contradicted the chairman’s reply and claimed that they increased the bus numbers in December. If there were never more than 220 buses on roads how did NMMT show 276 buses to calculate per kilometer income of Rs. 24.30. Pose this question to them and they go defensive stating that the proposal is still in its formation stage. More over, they did not have any answers as to how the income of petrol run buses was being used as a basis to generate revenue from CNG run buses of a contractor. Reliable sources reveal that the new contractor of the 100 buses will only be given profitable routes. On this the chairman said that the new contractor will get only the new routes and not the existing routes. But the GM says that the contractor will be given existing routes too. In haste the Chairman went on to say that unless the CNG station comes to the city, the proposal will not be considered at all. But the GM said that only later can they decide on the same. Evidently, both the NMMT Chairman and General Manager were in contradiction when it came to the basics of the proposal. The NMMT will earn Rs. 2.40 Crores from the 100 new buses while any simple calculation shows that CNG run buses will generate revenue of Crores for the contractor. Can a public transport undertaking afford to loose revenue from such schemes when it is running into loss that is the million dollar question that only NMMT Committee members can answer. The controversial proposal is now headed to the NMMC Standing Committee for approval. With cameraperson Vikrant Baile, Zeba Warsia for NMTV News.
March 21, 2015
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