New Delhi: The odd-even traffic scheme aimed at curbing pollution will be back in Delhi from April 15 to 30, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal announced on Thursday.
He told a news conference that this was decided following feedback from the people of Delhi in the wake of the January 1-15 experiment which he and his ministers said had proved to be a hit.
“The next phase of the odd-even scheme will start from April 15,” he said, adding that two-wheelers and women motorists would continue to be exempted.
He said the scheme cannot be implemented on a permanent basis in Delhi — home to nearly 90 lakh vehicles — till public transport was in a position to cope with all those who would take to it.
“If we implement the scheme on the nearly 30 lakh two-wheelers, there will be chaos.”
Kejriwal said the Delhi government was discussing whether the scheme — under which cars with odd registration numbers would ply on odd dates and those with even numbers on even dates — should be enforced every 15 days a month.
“This is only under discussion now,” he said, flanked by Transport Minister Gopal Rai.
“If the people of Delhi cooperate, if they can bear with the difficulties for six days a month, then we can think of this.”
According to Kejriwal, when traffic curbs are implemented for two weeks, each category of car owners is affected only for a maximum of six days as the scheme is not applicable on Sundays.
(Also read: Odd-even plan is temporary, we’ve long-term solution for Delhi’s pollution: Prakash Javadekar)
The Aam Aadmi Party leader added that about 500 retired military personnel would be recruited to enforce the odd-even curbs in April.
He said most people in Delhi wanted exemption given to the VIPs in January to go.
Kejriwal indicated he was not ready for this.
“We will request VIPs to follow the (odd-even) system. But we will keep the exemptions. The more the VIPs follow it voluntarily, it will be good.”