Delhi Transport Minister Gopal Rai Wednesday finally put an end to speculation and answered the question on the minds of lakhs of Delhi residents. Odd-even operations, the government’s pollution-control plan that will conclude on January 15, will be back for a second phase, said the minister.
The details of the second phase of the private car rationing experiment will be discussed in a review meeting slated to be held by Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on January 18.
The meeting will be attended by officials of all the departments concerned and independent environment experts, said the minister.
“We will take stock of these 15 days and based on our findings, we will decide what shape it will take in the future. We will also discuss what other measures for pollution control can be taken in the future,” said Rai.
He said the government will also work towards setting up a committee to promote cycling as an alternative mode of transport.
“We will work in phases… in the first phase, we will encourage local connectivity. When people step out to go to the market, to the barber or to visit a friend, they should not take their motorcycle or car. They should take a cycle instead. The money earned through challans will be given as subsidy to help people buy cycles. In the second phase, we will create cycle lanes so that people are able to cycle on main roads as well,” he said.
“In the third phase, we will create cycle stands at Metro and bus stations so that people don’t have to worry about parking their cycles. The committee will explore these possibilities,” added Rai.
The minister said an event will be held on January 17 to “congratulate” the people of Delhi on the “success” of the odd-even plan.
“At a meeting of the coordination committee, it was decided that we will hold a ‘badhai’ programme at the Chhatrasal Stadium on January 17,” he said.
The entire cabinet, officers of all concerned government departments and private bus owners who participated in the odd-even operations will be part of the programme, said Rai.
“All the people of Delhi, who made odd-even a success, are invited to celebrate with the Cabinet,” said Rai.