Uncertainty looms on running Mumbai Monorail despite of more coaches

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Mumbai Monorail
Mumbai Monorail

Mumbai: The Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) will get more coaches for the city transit project. But it is uncertain as to when the Mumbai Monorail will be made operational. MMRDA has already received six coaches out of 10 from LTSE – a consortium of Larsen & Toubro and Scomi Engineering.  The officials are pinning the delay on contractors who have not been able to deliver the spare parts.

MMRDA will receive two more coaches by December and by February the other two coaches too be delivered, informed the MMRDA official. The authority added the postponement is due to contractor’s inability to organize spare parts for the monorail on time.

The first phase of Mumbai Monorail was closed last year after fire broke out in November. Since then MMRDA has not started the operations. MMRDA stated that owing to non-availability of spare parts of RSTs, they have reduced the number of working trains to facilitate sustainable operation of the monorails.

But the delay is no way hindering MMRDA’s effort in starting the second phase of Mumbai Monorail. The officials though have not shared the tentative date to start the project. They will soon float tenders for the operations and maintenance for the monorail. MMRDA will evaluate the bidders and take call.

There are also negotiations going on between LTSE, MMRDA and current operators. LTSE has asked for new rates for trips shared MMRDA. As per the construction contract LTSE was to construct as well as operate Mumbai Monorail for first three years on a fixed trip rate. They are now asking for revised rate, a hike above the earlier rate fixed at Rs 4,000 per trip. LTSE, in a fresh bid want MMRDA to increase this rate and negotiations are on for the same.

MMRDA shared the data of the first phase where in the average ridership was 16,000 passengers on daily basis. They expect the figures to touch one lakh once both the stretches are made operational added MMRDA. A response from L&T is awaited.

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