200 electric buses to be deployed in J&K’s twin capital cities: Officials

SRINAGAR — A fleet of 200 electric buses will be deployed in the twin capital cities of Jammu and Kashmir to establish an environmentally, socially and financially sustainable network of public transport in the union territory, officials said here on Monday.

TATA Motors Ltd and Chalo Mobility Pvt. Ltd have entered into a strategic collaboration for the deployment of these buses, they said.

They said a contract agreement was signed between the firms in the presence of Chief Secretary Arun Kumar Mehta and Principal Secretary of Housing Urban and Development Department (HU&DD) Dheeraj Gupta.

The collaboration is part of the Jammu and Kashmir government’s initiative to establish an environmentally, socially, and financially sustainable network of public transport for Jammu and Srinagar, they said.

Under this project, Tata Motors and Chalo Mobility will jointly work to smoothen the functioning of electric buses in both cities in coordination with Jammu Smart City and Srinagar Smart City, they said.

Tata Motors will be responsible for the supply, operation and maintenance of electric buses, 100 each in Jammu and Srinagar, they added.

Chalo Mobility will deploy its consumer technology solutions to offer conveniences like electronic ticket issuing Machines (ETIMs), an Automated Fare collection system (AFCS), a mobile app with Mobile Tickets and Mobile Passes platform, smart cards platform and cloud-based hosting.

The Jammu Smart City Limited (JSCL) has executed the tendering process for the supply and operations of electric buses and to establish a national common mobility card-compliant digital ticketing solution in both the smart cities, the officials said.

Speaking on the occasion, the UT chief secretary said the induction of electric buses will transform the transport system in both cities Jammu and Srinagar.

He asked both firms to ensure the best travelling experience for people.

Principal Secretary Gupta said electric vehicles are the future of transport as they are eco-friendly, ideal for the urban environment, and contribute to reducing pollution levels.

He added this collaboration will facilitate effortless and convenient travel in electric buses in Jammu and Srinagar. ”Passengers can also get details like real-time tracking of buses, how congested it is, along with expected time of arrival,” he said.

The principal secretary also informed that the partnership between both firms will also eliminate the need for paper tickets and make contactless ticketing a greener option.

”It will also play a significant role in savings on ticketing costs for the authority,” he added.

Apart from reducing pollution levels, the electric buses are also equipped with state-of-the-art facilities like a panic button, location system, CCTV, stop request system, and other security-related features, the officials added. — (PTI)