Updated: October 23, 2018 3:12:36 am
The Delhi High Court Monday allowed the Delhi government to purchase 500 more standard-floor buses to improve the public transport system in the capital. In August, the Supreme Court had allowed the Delhi government to purchase 500 buses so that the shortage of buses in the city could be met. The Delhi government had also assured the SC that hydraulic lifts would be installed in the buses for the benefit of differently abled persons.
Taking note of the Delhi government’s stand before the apex court, the HC bench comprising Chief Justice Rajendra Menon and Justice V K Rao directed that the standard-floor buses proposed to be procured have hydraulic lifts for easy access to differently abled persons.
“…the government agrees in the affidavit before us as also before the Supreme Court that all standard-floor buses now to be purchased would be provided and fitted with hydraulic/mechanical lifts to facilitate accessibility to differently abled persons. Taking note of all these factors, we are of the considered view that for the present, no further directions can be issued,” the bench observed.
The bench also dismissed the PILs filed by Nipun Malhotra, who suffers from a locomotor disability, calling his petition “devoid of merits”. Malhotra had challenged the Cabinet’s September 2017 decision to acquire 2,000 standard-floor buses at a cost of Rs 300 crore. He had alleged that the move would deprive persons with disabilities as well as senior citizens from accessing public transport. He had further claimed that standard-floor buses were not equipped for wheelchairs and would substantially affect about 2.34 lakh differently abled people. Following which, the High Court on June 1 had precluded the Delhi government from procuring any standard-floor mini buses.
However, the Delhi government and the DTC had moved the top court against HC’s August order barring them from procuring standard-floor buses without facilities for special category commuters.
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