Delay in ABT Metres Provisioning Costs West Central Railway
RAILWAYS & METRO RAIL

Delay in ABT Metres Provisioning Costs West Central Railway

A recent report by the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) has shed light on a significant financial setback for the West Central Railway, as a delay in the provisioning of Availability Based Tariff (ABT) metres led to an additional expenditure of Rs 75.10 crore on power purchase. The PAC, tabling its report in the Lok Sabha, revealed that the delay stemmed from procedural issues within the Railway Ministry.

In March 2015, the Railway Ministry issued directives to all zonal railways, urging them to acquire direct power from generating companies through open access and ensure the installation of ABT metres. These instructions were aimed at reducing traction tariffs and optimizing transportation costs.

However, despite entering into agreements for open access in March 2016, power supply commenced only in January 2017, primarily due to the delay in provisioning ABT metres. The PAC report, based on findings from the Comptroller and Auditor General of India report presented in Parliament in 2022, emphasized the adverse financial impact of this delay.

The report highlighted that despite repeated instructions from the Ministry, the West Central Railway Administration failed to promptly secure and install the necessary ABT metres. It was only between January 10, 2017, and April 20, 2017, that the ABT metres were finally procured and installed. This delay of over a year in procurement, coupled with delays in estimate preparation, resulted in a substantial extra expenditure of Rs 75.10 crore between March 15, 2016, and January 10, 2017.

In response to these findings, the Committee has recommended that the Ministry streamline and fast-track procedures for the procurement of all items relevant to the railways' operational network. This call for improved efficiency aims to mitigate financial losses due to delays and ensure optimal utilization of resources.

The revelation of this substantial financial burden underscores the importance of timely and efficient procurement processes within railway infrastructure projects. As the Railway Ministry works to implement the Committee's recommendations, it remains crucial to address procedural bottlenecks to prevent similar financial setbacks in the future.

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A recent report by the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) has shed light on a significant financial setback for the West Central Railway, as a delay in the provisioning of Availability Based Tariff (ABT) metres led to an additional expenditure of Rs 75.10 crore on power purchase. The PAC, tabling its report in the Lok Sabha, revealed that the delay stemmed from procedural issues within the Railway Ministry. In March 2015, the Railway Ministry issued directives to all zonal railways, urging them to acquire direct power from generating companies through open access and ensure the installation of ABT metres. These instructions were aimed at reducing traction tariffs and optimizing transportation costs. However, despite entering into agreements for open access in March 2016, power supply commenced only in January 2017, primarily due to the delay in provisioning ABT metres. The PAC report, based on findings from the Comptroller and Auditor General of India report presented in Parliament in 2022, emphasized the adverse financial impact of this delay. The report highlighted that despite repeated instructions from the Ministry, the West Central Railway Administration failed to promptly secure and install the necessary ABT metres. It was only between January 10, 2017, and April 20, 2017, that the ABT metres were finally procured and installed. This delay of over a year in procurement, coupled with delays in estimate preparation, resulted in a substantial extra expenditure of Rs 75.10 crore between March 15, 2016, and January 10, 2017. In response to these findings, the Committee has recommended that the Ministry streamline and fast-track procedures for the procurement of all items relevant to the railways' operational network. This call for improved efficiency aims to mitigate financial losses due to delays and ensure optimal utilization of resources. The revelation of this substantial financial burden underscores the importance of timely and efficient procurement processes within railway infrastructure projects. As the Railway Ministry works to implement the Committee's recommendations, it remains crucial to address procedural bottlenecks to prevent similar financial setbacks in the future.

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