<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Early next year the contract between Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) and Scomi Engineering will cease to Operate and Maintain Mumbai Monorail. The Monorail which connects east Mumbai to the south will rope in a private player for its operation and maintenance. The officials are working towards floating a bid sometime later next month or during early November so that a private transport company can operate and maintain the system for next three years.”Scomi Engineering’s contract terminates on January 31, but they have agreed to handle the operation and maintenance even in February 2017. This is because the commissioning of the second phase of the project is likely to happen sometime in February,” said a source.Once the second phase of just over 10-km between Wadala Depot and Jacob Circle (Sant Gadge Maharaj Chowk) is opened for public, Scomi Engineering will exit from their role. This is when a new contract will be processed.Presently, Scomi Engineering is being paid Rs 3,131 for each trip that is operated. This price includes maintenance of fleet of monorail in Mumbai. “Actually, the cost is not just for 10 monorail trains in India, but it is for a total of operating and maintaining 15 trains. Balance five are yet to arrive in Mumbai. Moreover, this price was agreed upon for the entire route of Chembur-Wadala Depot-Jacob Circle (19.17-km), but what has happened is they are getting paid full amount for operating half the project,” shared a source. Despite being paid more, the trains are riddled with series of technical problems.A senior MMRDA official shared that though Scomi Engineering is keen to continue the contract for another three years, they expect to be paid double the amount. “The rough calculation comes to around Rs 6,500 to Rs7,000 per trip, as per initial discussions with Scomi Engineering,” said the senior official. The reserve price of Operation and Maintenance, for the upcoming contract, has not been shared by MMRDA with dna, however, it is likely to be more than Rs3,131 per trip, which is the cost at present.