The Delhi government on Monday approved a proposal to introduce 1,552 more buses into the cluster bus service being operated by private operators under PPP model in the national Capital.
Government officials said the bus service in four clusters six,seven,eight and nine would start operation in the next three months since the state Cabinet,presided over by Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit,has given its clearance.
The government has been striving to augment the citys public transport fleet. The agreements for five of the 17 identified clusters have already been signed. The buses under clusters four and five are operating partially. The Cabinet has cleared the implementation of clusters six,seven,eight and nine, Dikshit said.
At present,286 buses are plying in the cluster bus service,which was introduced to phase out the controversial Blueline fleet. In 2009,the government divided nearly 650 bus routes into 17 clusters and decided to give each cluster to a private operator.
Four corporate entities were already given contract to operate the services in five clusters,though cluster two was yet to be launched because depot space has been readied for the buses.
The government claimed that 1,000 buses should be plying under the scheme by this year-end.
Officials said 279 buses would ply under cluster six for north of East Delhi comprising Jheel,Mayur Vihar Phase-III,Shahdara,Karawal Nagar,Yamuna Vihar,Sonia Vihar,Loni Border,Vishnu Nagar,Seemapuri. Cluster seven will have 358 buses which would cover several routes,including Anand Vihar ISBT,New Seemapuri,Jhilmil Colony and Dilshad Garden.
The maximum number of buses will be in cluster eight 497. These buses will be available in the West Delhi areas such as Uttam Nagar,Janakpuri,Manglapuri,Tilak Nagar,Hastal and Vikaspuri.
Cluster nine for Southwest Delhi (Dwarka,Badu Sarai,Pandwala,Bakarwala,JJ Colony and other areas) will have 418 buses.
All the buses will have an onboard passenger information system similar to that of Delhi Metro,GPS and electronic display board.
The Transport department would collect the bus fares,while the private operator would be paid a fixed amount on the basis of every kilometre travelled.
Other than the private buses,the DTC has 5,775 buses,including 4,000 low-floor ones.
The Transport department has taken steps to increase parking space for more cluster buses. So far,space for 2,000 buses is being prepared, the official said.