Navi Mumbai: The initiative of Navi Mumbai Municipal Transport (NMMT) to use no diesel buses on Saturdays, Sundays and public holidays has turned out to be a profitable decision. The civic transport wing has already saved over Rs2.4 lakh litres of diesel so far, which translates to savings of around Rs 2.5 crore.
The initiative was started on Jan 15, 2022. On weekends and public holidays when there is a low demand for buses, NMMT runs only electric and CNG buses.
In order to reduce the losses incurred by NMMT, the civic transport wing paid attention to reducing fuel consumption by increasing the use of electric buses. Accordingly, NMMT decided on zero fuel days on Saturdays and Sundays, including public holidays. NMMT's General Manager Yogesh Kaduskar said that the initiative is aimed at cutting down expenditure. “We have already saved around 2,45,956 litres of diesel so far by running only electric and CNG buses,” he said. The NMMT currently has a total of 180 electric buses.
“We run electric buses on weekends and public holidays and if required, we use CNG buses to meet the demand,” said Mr Kaduskar. According to NMMT, there are 30% to 40% of commuters on weekends as compared to weekdays.
Due to the rising prices of diesel, the daily operation cost of NMMT was increasing and this was affecting the financial health of the transport wing. The step has not only reduced the losses but also provided an environment-friendly transport option in the satellite city.
Before the Covid pandemic, the price of diesel was around Rs65 per litre. However, soon after the reopening of services, fuel prices also increased. The cost of diesel is now Rs95 per litre. This led to an increase in NMMT's losses. According to officials, they need around 7000-8000 litres of diesel per day. However, fuel saved two days a week resulted in savings of around Rs23 lakh per month.
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