Pune: 177 e-buses waiting to be added to PMPML’s fleet; passengers suffer due to frequent breakdowns

Pune: 177 e-buses waiting to be added to PMPML’s fleet; passengers suffer due to frequent breakdowns

Pune: 177 e-buses waiting to be added to PMPML’s fleet; passengers suffer due to frequent breakdowns

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Two and a half years after being added to the Pune Mahanagar Parivahan Mahamandal Ltd (PMPML) fleet, the 177 E-buses are yet to be deployed. On one hand, the number of buses in the fleet of PMPML is decreasing while on the other, despite the agreement, the contractor is delaying the process of introducing these buses on the road for the public. Therefore, PMPML uses old buses in which there are frequent breakdowns and the passengers suffer. 

Every day, between 1600 – 1700 PMPML buses are dispatched throughout the routes. There will soon be a reduction in the number of 266 buses from contractors that have served 12 years in the PMPML service. Despite having been owned by PMPML for  12 years, around 327 buses are still being driven without permits. As a result, buses are breaking down more frequently and approximately 50 buses break down each day. The bus is stalled in the blazing sun on the route, forcing passengers to walk and unfortunately deal with the time and cost consequences of this.

On the other hand, 650 additional e-buses were planned to be gradually added to the PMPML network. For this, PMPML partnered with a variety of businesses. By 2021, all e-buses were supposed to be part of the PMPML fleet; however, 177 e-buses are yet to arrive because of the contractor’s negligence. The agitated passengers want to know why the PMPML administration is not taking action against the contractor.

There are currently five PMPML depots functioning in the cities of Pune and Pimpri-Chinchwad with 473 e-buses. The Bhekrai Nagar, Pune Station, Baner, Nigdi (Bhakti-Shakti), and Wagholi e-depots are the designated destinations for the e-buses. Following the addition of the recently introduced 173 e-buses to the fleet, the Nigdi e-depot will be operational. The buses must be transported onto the route at a specified time in order to fulfill the terms of the contract with the PMPML contractor. If the bus is not plying on the route in accordance with the contract, PMPML administration may fine the concerned contractor for every single bus per day. However, it has been two and a half years since these buses last travelled the route. Thus, questions are being raised about why this contractor is not the target of any severe action so far.