The Yogi Adityanath government has cleared a proposal to ply 700 electric buses in 14 top cities of Uttar Pradesh, in a decision involving an investment of around Rs 965 crore.
The state cabinet meeting, chaired by chief minister Adityanath in Lucknow last night, approved the proposal of implementing the electric bus proposal on ‘gross cost contract model’ by selecting the operator through an open-bidding process. The bidding document was also cleared by the cabinet.
Under phase-II of the Centre's Faster Adoption and Manufacturing of (Hybrid &) Electric Vehicles (FAME) Scheme, 11 cities, namely, Lucknow, Meerut, Prayagraj (Allahabad), Agra, Ghaziabad, Kanpur, Varanasi, Moradabad, Aligarh, Jhansi and Bareilly were selected by the union heavy industries and public enterprises ministry for plying of 600 mini air-conditioned electric buses. The state government has also proposed to run 100 electric buses in three other cities -- Gorakhpur, Shahjahanpur and Mathura-Vrindavan.
A gross cost contract stipulates the payment of a fixed sum to selected operators for providing the underlying service, while the revenue is collected by the authority. The Centre will provide a grant of Rs 45 lakh per bus, amounting to a total of Rs 315 crore, or about 33 per cent of the total project cost of Rs 965 crore.
The state urban transport directorate is also gearing up to facilitate the setting up of a sufficient number of charging stations and maintenance infrastructure to service electric buses under the public-private partnership (PPP) route.
Uttar Pradesh has estimated that nearly 200,000 charging stations would be needed over the next few years to cater to the growing fleet of public and private EVs in the state.
Recently, UP urban development minister Ashutosh Tandon had instructed officials to expedite the tendering process for the proposed fleet of electric buses.
Earlier on August 6, the state cabinet had approved the state EV policy, which is projected to attract private investments worth Rs 40,000 crore in the next five years and create about 50,000 new job opportunities.
“We have envisaged that by 2024, nearly 70 per cent of public transport buses in UP would be electric, while about 10,000 new electric buses would be introduced for public transport,” UP cabinet minister and state government spokesperson Sidharth Nath Singh had told the media after the August 6 cabinet meeting.
Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana and Maharashtra had already rolled out their EV policies. However, being the largest consumer state, UP is hoping to harness the high growth potential of the sector by attracting greater pie of private investment.
Under the policy, the state has offered various incentives, including land cost subsidy of 25 per cent, up to Rs 50 lakh subsidy on capital investment (capex) for technology transfers and Rs 25 lakh capex subsidy on charging stations to mega anchor units and ultra-mega battery units.