Delhi Metro, after missing several deadlines, has finally set July as its target to start introducing 300 feeder buses in the city.
The original idea of the bus service — to be procured in three clusters of 100 buses each — was to connect metro stations with residential colonies. The buses were scheduled to hit the roads by November last The project got delayed and Delhi Metro set March 2013 as its new deadline, which it again failed to meet.
“We will start introducing new feeder buses in July with all the 300 buses likely to be operational by December,” said Mangu Singh, chief of Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC). He refused to explain why the project had been delayed even after the contract had been awarded.
In October, DMRC had got the nod to purchase only 228 vehicles from the state-level steering committee on Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission. Sources said the urban development ministry had already released funds for the purchase of vehicles through the Delhi government.
The DMRC set the November deadline after a parliamentary panel on urban development had in April last year asked it to ensure that new feeder buses begin plying within six months. The DMRC has failed at least twice to introduce the service citing “technical reasons”.
The DMRC currently operates 120 mini feeder buses, each capable of carrying 18-20 passengers.