Need for public transport augmentation
- The need for augmenting public transport in Delhi has been felt strongly owing to higher pollution levels in the city.
- The lack of public transport capacity such as buses and cycle tracks force people to use private vehicles, adding to the traffic burden and pollution.
- During the implementation of the odd-even formula, the government extended school holidays, to use school buses under the DTC-fleet.
The odd-even formula
- To curb pollution levels, the Delhi government started the odd-even formula allowing odd numbered cars on odd days and even numbered cars on even days.
- According to a study by Centre for Science and Environment, pollution levels spiked in the capital post the end of odd-even formula.
- The Delhi government wants to impose the formula further, but lacks an adequate public transportation system.
Severe shortage of buses
Delhi has around 4600 DTC (Delhi Transport Corporation) and 1500 cluster buses. However, as per a survey by the Aam-Aadmi Party government there is a need for 10,000 more buses to adequately cater to transportation needs of Delhiites.
Delhi govt's 20-point agenda to address public transport
- Delhi government is likely to unveil a 20 point agenda next week to modernize public transportation in the capital.
- The government seeks to augment the capacity of public transport systems before implementing odd-even schemes more frequently.
- The plan includes installation of CCTVs, GPS, e-tracking, etc. in buses, common mobility card for metro and buses, development of cycle tracks, procurement of 3000 buses, etc.
Blueprint of 20 point agenda ready
"We have prepared the blueprint of the 20-point agenda to boost public transport infrastructure under which several steps, including purchase of new buses, will be taken in this year," - Gopal Rai, Delhi Transport Minister.
Strengthening public transportation
- Of the 3000 new buses to be added on Delhi roads, 1000 cluster buses (orange buses) will be added by Apr-May'16.
- Another 1000 DTC buses whose procurement will start from next week will be added in Aug'16.
- 1000 premium AC buses, with facilities such as WiFi, CCTVs, magazines, etc., will be added by Nov'16 and can be booked via mobile applications.
Free rides, low fares unlikely in DTC
- Delhi's Lieutenant-Governor Anil Baijal returned the proposal by the Delhi government to offer free rides to students, widows and the elderly, seeking clarifications on the financing of the scheme.
- Officials said DTC's mounting operational losses were the reason the proposal was sent back.
- Officials stated that "even the finance department has raised valid questions" about the schemes financial feasibility.