Delhi Transport Minister Gopal Rai has expressed satisfaction over the initial response to the second phase of the odd-even traffic formula. He also appealed to women to go themselves to drop and pick their children from school to avoid inconvenience, as the second phase of odd-even traffic scheme which aims at battling pollution in the national capital started on April 15 and will last till April 30 .
“I’d also request those going to drop and pick their kids to take their neighbours’ children as well,” said Rai, who carpooled for work in a odd numbered car with Burari legislator Sanjeev Jha and Mehrauli legislator Naresh Yadav.
On Ram Navami celebrations in the national capital, the transport minister said as the devotees were expected to car pool or come in odd numbered cars.
“We don’t want to interfere in any religious procession. Moreover, it is advisable for the devotees to carpool or use odd-numbered cars,” Rai told IANS. He also hinted at the probability of odd-even scheme becoming a feature of every month if this phase proved successful.
“The first phase was during winters and this is summer. We will have experiences from both the seasons. Therefore, depending on the feedback the government may consider odd-even scheme every month,” he added.
Rai , who has been at the fore front of the odd even scheme and has come down hard on those who are critical of the odd- even plan. He had stressed that Delhi government’s priority is to protect people from the rising pollution.
Gopal Rai further claimed that some businessmen, who deal in expensive cars, are running a “misleading” campaign against its rationing scheme. The minister also said if there is a reduction of about 30 per cent in the consumption of diesel and petrol, some people face loss in their businesses.
“People who do business of big cars are getting affected due to odd-even but I want to say we don’t want to affect their business. Our first priority is to save the lives of people. Such people are running a misleading campaign against odd-even by manipulating data, which is not right,” Rai said.
He further said for the government there is nothing more important than the lives of people.
“A campaign is being run by some persons to mislead people that 20 lakh cars will cause the same levels of pollutions as 10 lakh cars do. A lie is being spread about this scheme. Some persons say they don’t know about reduction in pollution but congestion on roads,” he added.
(IANS with agencies)