After two failed bids, Delhi Transport Corporation (DTC) may soon sign a deal with an Indian automotive manufacturing company to procure a total of 1,380 semi-low-floor buses to replace its fleet of standard-floor ones (yellow buses).
"We invited global players for procurement of 1,380 semi- low-floor buses... Tata Motors has shown interest. We have now sent the bid document to Pune's Central Institute of Road Transport (CIRT), which is the corporation's consultant, to seek technical suggestions on the matter," DTC spokesperson R S Minhas said.
DTC had earlier issued tenders on two occasions for procurement of 1,725 buses -- 1,380 semi-low-floor non-AC buses and 345 low-floor AC buses. But the corporation had failed to zero in on a firm, official sources said, as the bidders quoted higher maintenance charges.
Minhas said, "Within next 10 days, DTC will reach an conclusion. These buses are being procured to replace the standard-floor buses, which largely cater to the rural and outer Delhi areas."
DTC officials are confident of procuring buses this time. Minhas also said that semi-low-floor buses are more suited for outer and rural areas as the road condition in such pockets is not good.
"Procuring semi-low-floor buses will help DTC ensure better service in the national Capital," he said.
According to DTC, around 600 standard-floor buses have been phased out as they have outlived their utility.
At present, there are 1,275 standard-floor buses, which have completed their operational period and will now be replaced by the new semi-low-floor buses.
At present, there is demand for 11,000 buses in Delhi, and as per an agreement between DTC and Delhi Integrated Multi-Modal Transit System (DIMTS) Ltd., both are to run 5,500 buses each in the national capital.
But while DTC operates around 4,937 buses, DIMTS has only around 1,157 buses - 4,343 less than the required number of 5,500 vehicles.