Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal on Wednesday suggested more car pooling to avoid discomfort while the Odd-Even scheme will be in place starting from 15 April/.
Delhi government has also admitted that it had not been able to arrive at a solution to the problem of cars returning after dropping school children and suggested car pooling.
The government, under the second phase of car rationing scheme to ease air pollution, has exempted vehicles ferrying children to and back from school in uniform will, but there are concerns about what will happen when the car is on its way back after dropping the child.
During an interaction with students at Sarvodaya Balika Vidyala in Delhi, Kejriwal said the government has exempted vehicles carrying children in school dress during the second phase of odd even which could pose difficulty and suggest car-pooling with neighbours to avoid problems.
“We gave it a lot of thought but no solution could be found. It will cause some problems but vehicles could be shared with neighbours,” the Chief Minister was quoted by PTI.
Transport Minister Gopal Rai advised students to take help of ‘PoochhO Carpool’ app launched by the government.
Kejriwal said the implementation of the odd even scheme in January did not reduce pollution “as much as expected” but it significantly helped reduce traffic congestion in the city.
“Odd even did reduce pollution but not as much as expected. However, it significantly reduced traffic congestion, the roads were clear and people liked it very much,” he said in reply to a question by a girl student at Sarvodaya Balika Vidyala here.
The odd even scheme was implemented on an experimental basis from January 1 to January 15 in view of high air pollution in the national capital. The second phase of the scheme will commence on April 15.
Kejriwal said that a debate is going on regarding how much pollution reduced during the trial of odd even scheme in January and the estimates are varying.
“Fortune magazine says it dropped by 13 per cent, others say it lowered by 55 per cent. Pollution did lower due to odd even scheme.”
Claiming that the sale of petrol and diesel had gone down by 40 per cent during 15 day trial of odd even, Kejriwal added it is “natural” that pollution reduced as less fuel was consumed.
“We are considering implementation of odd even scheme for 15 days in each month. Although we have not decided on it. It will help in reducing pollution and provide big relief from congestion,” he said.
The Chief Minister administered an oath to the school girls pledging to fight air pollution in the city.