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The river navigation department (RND) will float an expression of interest (EoI) on October 4 for the construction of a solar electric hybrid fast ferry. The budget for the vessel, which PWD minister Ramkrishna Dhavalikar had said, earlier this month, will operate on the Aldona-Panaji route is Rs 4 crore.
“We have received the government’s approval to include such a ferry in our fleet and as a result, we will be floating the expression of interest. The technical bid will be opened soon after that,” an RND official said, adding that the best concept and most reasonable proposal given by the technical bidder will be accepted and accordingly be sent for government approval.
“Proposals that qualify according to RND’s requirements will then be eligible for the opening of financial bid. After October 10, we will open the financial bid and go for the lowest bidder,” the official said.
Sources informed that the vessel will run on solar as well as battery power and be supported by a diesel generator set (to be used as back up if required). The 72-seater ferry will be used to transport local commuters, particularly pedestrians, in the morning and evening, and as a cruise boat for tourists during the day. No motor vehicles will be allowed on the vessel.
“If we find it satisfactory, we may acquire two more such ferries. The second one will ply on the Sanvordem-Panaji route,” Dhavalikar said.
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