NEW DELHI (March 3) – Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal said road rationing and congestion charges are not long-term answers to the city’s traffic and pollution problems – and the focus therefore should be on improving public transport.
The comment is seen as an admission that the Odd-Even scheme the city tried out twice in 2016, didn’t work. Kejriwal also indicated the plan that restricts the use of private cars was not being brought back.
“Last year we had taken cues from abroad and tried implementing Odd-Even to fight congestion and air pollution but this is a temporary measure. Not a permanent solution …” he said.
To clear the Capital’s toxic air, a Supreme Court-appointed panel has suggested steps such as steep parking fee, shutting down of schools and a congestion charge on days of high pollution.
“… But all this can be done only when our public transport is reliable. If we do not improve public transport and impose such restrictions, public jootey maregi hume (people will beat us up with shoes),” Kejriwal said.