Make in India program gets boost with local procurement made mandatory for Metro projects

The Ministry of Urban Development has stipulated mandatory terms for the tender documents for the various Metro projects across the country.

The Ministry of Urban Development has used the various metro projects sprouting up in cities across the country to encourage the Make in India campaign by stipulating mandatory terms for the tender documents. The new mandatory terms and conditions were circulated to all the metro projects, and have come into effect from Friday. The new regulations are designed to encourage the setting up of manufacturing units in the country, as well as increasing the volume of procurement of locally made equipment.

At the moment, there are metro projects up and running in Delhi, Kolkata, Mumbai, Jaipur, Gurgaon, Bengaluru and Chennai. There are metro projects are being constructed in eleven cities, and there are projects being planned for an additional thirteen cities. 1,920 metro coaches are operational in the country, with 1,420 coaches being under procurement. There will be a requirement of 1,600 additional metro coaches over the course of the next three years. The metro coaches are estimated to cost around Rs 10 crore each, and the local procurement of these coaches form the main thrust of the new regulations.

The mandatory conditions in the tender document now require that 75 percent of the metro cars are to be acquired from local manufacturers. If the procurement is more than a hundred coaches, the contractor may either establish a local production facility, or tie up with local manufacturers. A list of critical equipment and subsystems is to be identified for spares and repairs beyond the warranty period. At least twenty five percent of these critical equipment and subsystems are to be made in India, either directly by the original equipment manufacturer, or through a partnership with an Indian company.

Metro companies with a large fleet size are expected to undertake in-house maintenance, to develop local expertise on a long term basis. The Ministry has stipulated nine types of signalling equipment from within the country. The Metro companies have also been directed to build up local competence, so that the knowledge base and technical support is available from within the country itself. Indigenisation of several Metro functions have also been prescribed, including preparation of the time tables, managing distrubances, fault reporting, rolling stock management, infrastructure provision and maintenance.

New standardisation norms are also prescribed, to enable unattended train operations and autonomous trains. Train gauge, body width, seating capacity, and operational speeds. There are also new norms for acceleration rates, energy consumption, noise and vibration levels and collision standards.

The next move by the ministry is to evolve common eligibility criteria for suppliers of rolling stock, as well as the equipment and subsystems, which will be done within two weeks.

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