Following an incident of a bus catching fire, the Brihanmumbai Electrical and Transport Supply (BEST) has instructed bus manufacturer Ashok Leyland to inspect 1,561 CNG buses in its fleet within next two months.
It was revealed in the BEST committee meeting on Wednesday that gas pipes in buses bought recently from Ashok Leyland were faulty.
In a statement, the managing director of Ashok Leyland, Vinod Dasari said, “all their vehicles undergo a rigorous testing and quality control procedure. However, if there were any deviations, Ashok Leyland would rectify these immediately, regardless of the costs involved”.
The manufacturer will deploy the team of one supervisor and four technicians at Mulund, Pratiksha Nagar, Bandra, Santacruz, Goregaon, Oshiwara, Marol, Majas, Worli and Wadala depots.
A team of BEST engineers was formed to inspect all the CNG buses after the bus on route number 4 limited (Oshiwara to Backbay) caught fire near Andheri on January 13 due to gas leakage, according to the BEST.
The BEST had bought 800 CNG buses from Ashok Leyland last year under the Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JNNRUM), while CNG engines were fitted into 761 buses that were bought earlier from the same manufacturer.
“We had issued a show cause notice to the manufacturer about the faulty buses and they have agreed to inspect all the buses. It’s a voluminous task and that is why it will take two months,” said OP Gupta, BEST General Manager in the committee meeting on Wednesday.
Gupta had also sent a letter asking why shouldn’t BEST blacklist Ashok Leyland for their carelessness.
BEST has found specific technical faults in the 1,000 buses taken under JNNRUM. Along with faulty CNG pipes, the engine is not that effective which makes the buses run slower than usual, says a report submitted to the committee.