As many as three Indian companies have shown interest in manufacturing rakes for the monorail projects, weeks after town planning authority MMRDA scrapped the bids by two Chinese firms.
Last month, the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) scrapped the Rs 500 crore contract for sourcing 10 rakes for the Jacob Circle-Wadala-Chembur monorail project wherein two Chinese firms had expressed their interest to supply the rakes, stating that the companies were "dictating" terms.
"Three Indian companies have shown interest in designing and developing Mono rail rolling stock," the authority tweeted.
MMRDA Commissioner R A Rajeev had earlier said that the authority was in talks with Indian companies including Bharat Heavy Electricals (BHEL) and Bharat Earth Movers (BEML), among others, for the contract.
"BHEL, BEML and a private sector player Titagarh have expressed their interest," an MMRDA official said. BEML has already bagged the contract for manufacturing metro rakes for Metro 2A (Dahisar-DN Nagar) and Metro-7 (Dahisar E-Andheri E).
"After giving first order for make in India metro coaches for Line 2 and 7,hopefully will get develop mono rail coaches in India," the authority said in the tweet.
Last year, MMRDA had floated a global tender to design, manufacture and supply 10 rakes and had received bids from China's CRR Corporation (China Rail Road Corporation) and BYD (Build Your Dreams) as well as an American firm.
However, the authority later cancelled the tender in January this year, when bidders were seeking changes in the terms. In February, the authority reinvited the bids and the size of the contract was around Rs 500 crore.
According to MMRDA, the Chinese firms which had again bid for the contract were continuously asking for revisions in terms and conditions and eligibility criteria.
MMRDA also noted that due to the current economic situation that has arisen following the COVID-19 pandemic and in line with the various polices announced by the government to encourage 'Make in India' schemes, it has been decided to look for Indian technology partners for development and long term support.
In March last year, MMRDA commissioned the operations of the second phase of the 19.54 km monorail project after it took over the operations and maintenance of the project from Scomi Engineering in December 2018. The latter had failed to supply the contracted rakes and other operational materials, including signalling equipment, and maintain the quality of monorail services despite many extensions.
MMRDA had also terminated its contract with the LTSE consortium (Larsen & Toubro and Scomi Engineering), which had the contract to build the country's first and only monorail in the megapolis.
The L&T-Scomi consortium had won the Rs 2,460-crore contract in 2009 to build and operate the 19.5-km monorail network on the Chembur-Wadala-Jacob Circle corridor connecting the eastern periphery of the city to the central parts.
The 8.9-km-long first phase of the monorail from Chembur to Wadala was opened to the public in February 2014, almost four years after the original deadline, while the second phase from Jacob Circle to Wadala was opened in March last year.