The National Green Tribunal (NGT), today, has slammed the Delhi Government, for not introducing destination buses.
These destination buses, are aimed to help improve air quality in the national capital.
A bench headed by NGT Chairperson Justice Swatanter Kumar and Justice R S Rathore, directed the Chief Secretary of Delhi government.
Swatanter has asked the Chief Secretary, as to why point-to-point bus services did not start till date despite its order last year. The bench further asked the Delhi Government, “Do you know the state of affairs in Delhi? “
“Children are not able to breathe fresh air and are going to hospitals every week. This is what you want for your children?”
The Chief Secretary of Delhi is directed to submit as to why destination buses in terms of our orders, have not been introduced so far.
Destination buses are the ones which travel from one point to another, without any halts in between the journey.
The Green Tribunal Panel, criticized the Delhi government, after its counsel submitted that there was a shortage of buses. It further said, “It is clearly seen, that large number of buses are standing along Yamuna at the depot.”
“We see no reason why state authorities have not implemented our order so far,” the Green Panel said.
The introduction of destination buses would facilitate an individual to pick up for such a service, rather than driving a car, alone on highly crowded roads.
Such point to point buses would result in reducing traffic jams, as a large number of people from places like Dwarka and Rohini come to offices in Central Delhi.
The bench said, “These destination buses, will impart an economical alternative to people to avoid the use of private cars.” Additionally, the buses will have direct benefits to minimize congestion, and improve the ambient air quality.
The Bench has listed the matter, for next hearing on April 29.
The NGT, earlier, had said, “The traffic on the roads of Delhi need to be reduced by taking various measures that have already been directed to be taken by various authorities.”
“This includes introduction of destination buses which could certainly help, particularly the middle class and single driver. Individuals would, hence, opt for destination buses rather than driving a car individually on highly congested roads of Delhi.”
NGT has also asked the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP), government to give incentives to those, using public transport in order to encourage them.
Furthermore, the NGT has, earlier directed the Delhi Government, to summon a meeting of authorities, and to come up with solutions to tackle the worsening air quality in the city.
NGT was established in 2010 by the National Green Tribunal Act. It replaced National Environment Appellate Authority.