International Road Federation (IRF) working for better  and safer roads world wide has welcomed Delhi Government’s initiative of re-introducing Odd Even number plate driving on different days to reduce pollution in the capital from November 1, 2019 .

“IRF welcomes Delhi government’s move but also wants private CNG vehicles to be included in the Odd Even scheme as these vehicles use much cleaner fuel and emit lesser carbon per unit capacity than two wheeler s “ said Mr K K Kapila, President, Emeritus,  International Road Federation , Geneva based global body working for better and safer roads world wide.

“Non inclusion of private CNG vehicles by the Delhi government will act as an disincentive for clean fuel CNG vehicles buyers in the capital and give a wrong signal to future buyers of CNG vehicles” Mr Kapila said.

“The series of rules issued by the Delhi government for implementing  Odd-Even scheme in Delhi which is just one of its kind pollution policy measure, The Government’ planned move to include Two Wheelers may be well intention-ed but was it backed by substantive thought and measures    is a pertinent question” said Mr K K Kapila,

“In Delhi Two wheelers out number four wheelers  making up around  70 % ,nearly double the number of Four wheelers of the vehicles plying on Delhi roads .They are major cause of sir pollution. Mumbai and other major cities have less pollution because they have less number of Two wheelers . The Two wheelers although back bone of the city’s economy should be included in the scheme” said Mr. Kapila.

“The transport cannot be singled out as main source for city’s air pollution , the other sources should be addressed at the same time .More over it does make sense to control traffic to check pollution but just not private pessenger vehicles alone  .The public transport should be improved that is the best solution” he added.

“Most of the Delhi has road plans that were laid down hundreds of years ago . Due to increase in number of vehicular traffic  the capital  roads cannot cope with the ever-increasing numbers of cars and other vehicles. This is causing massive congestion problems, especially at “rush hour” when vehicles literally crawl on all major roads .Delhi’s congestion has doubled in the last eight to 10 years and threatens to fail all projections. The capital’s congestion resulting in pollution  is worst among 35 Indian cities and is four times more than Mumbai and Bangalore,”  said Mr K.K.Kapila,

“Solutions to the problems have included improving public transport, metro has helped in a big way,  introducing park and ride schemes,  pedestrianization (e.g. CP n Chandni chowk ), encouraging people to share cars into work and building wide ring roads in addition to existing. “said Mr Kapila.

“An Action plan is needed to decongest the Delhi roads and if need be impose higher parking charges in certain areas and higher road tax on purchase of second or third vehicle by both individuals and companies. The idea is to discourage private transport by putting in place a multi-modal public transport system in the Capital. The city’s thirst for owning vehicles looks nowhere near quenched even though Delhi’s roads are groaning rather loudly under their weight. Vehicles are in fact known to be the largest contributor to the capital’s fast deteriorating air quality” he added.

The government’s failure to enhance the public transport system prompted such large numbers to opt for personal vehicles. “Ironically, this has also been the time of recession and there seems to have been no impact of that on the power of purchase as far as vehicles goes in the capital. This year has seen an unprecedented number of vehicles added to Delhi’s quota. Delhi’s Master Plan talks of an 80% road travel by public transport by 2020, but going by the latest figures released by the government, that plan looks unachievable. “he  said.