New Delhi: Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Friday announced that the ‘odd-even’ vehicle formula will start from November 4 to November 15 in an attempt to tackle pollution levels in the national capital.
Addressing a press conference, Kejriwal said that the ‘odd-even’ road rationing project that will be implemented for 12 days following Diwali, will reduce particulate air pollution concentrations by nearly 14 per cent.
As a part of the project to combat air pollution, Kejriwal announced a seven-point action plan during the crop burning season that will include distribution of masks, mechanized sweeping of roads, tree plantation, along with special plans for 12 of the city’s pollution hot spots.
Furthermore, he also addressed the rising anger over the recent revision of traffic penalties. Earlier, Kejriwal had said that the Delhi governmenr will take a ‘conscious call’ on reducing the fines under Motor Vehicle Amendment Act 2019.
“There has been an improvement in Delhi’s traffic ever since the new Motor Vehicle Act has been implemented. If there is any clause due to which people are facing more problem and we have the power to reduce the fine then we will certainly do it,” Kejriwal said at the press meet.
Reacting to the scheme, Union Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari said, “I don’t think it is needed. The Ring Road we have built has significantly reduced pollution in the city and our planned schemes will free Delhi of pollution in the next two years.”
In this year’s odd-even plan, restrictions will also be imposed on motorcycles along with private cars. Moreover, women drivers will be exempted from this rule and the odd-even road rationing scheme will be applicable only on weekdays, i.e., barring Saturday and Sunday.
The decision was taken after holding a meeting on Thursday with leading experts in the field of sustainability and the environment. Suggestions were made for a strong Winter Air Pollution Action Plan in Delhi, which faces severe smog conditions every winter.
The odd-even scheme, which is a part of the Graded Response Action Plan (GRAP), was first enforced in 2016. The scheme allows vehicles having odd and even number plates to operate on alternate days according to dates given in the official notification.