NEW DELHI: The major domestic manufactures of Metro coaches except one did not participate in the Kochi Metro’s bid to buy 75 coaches for the first phase. There were only two bidders for these coaches – Hyundai Rotem and China CNR Corporation Ltd – when bids were opened on Monday.
This was confirmed by both Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) and Kochi Metro Rail Ltd (KMRL) officials. Responding to why there has been such poor response, the authorities said they followed international bidding norms and anyone could participle in the process.
The Chinese company has sought some time to supply the coaches in case they emerge as successful bidder. Sources said that in all probability Hyundai Rotem would get the bid as the KMRL can’t wait for long. This may prove the fears
of a couple of domestic players that the tender would finally go to the only Indian company in the fray.
A few major domestic players including Siemens and Alstom had earlier opposed the condition to fix the coach width. Some of them had even submitted that they won’t participate in the bidding process
since they knew who would bag the work.
The decision to fix the coach width as 2.9 metres had snowballed into a controversy after some coach manufacturers objected to the norm and filed complaintswith the two Metro rail bodies and Union urban development ministry. They had alleged that such a norm would reduce the scope of competition.
Later, at KMRL board meeting it was decided to float the bids with the condition that 2.9 meters will be the maximum outer limit that KMRL had proposed.
“But the conditions mentioned in the tender on civil constriction and platform width neutralized the new normSo, it made no difference for almost all the other competing Indian firms to participate in the bidding process,” said a source, on condition of anonymity.