Will there be a third odd-even stint for Delhi?
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Will there be a third odd-even stint for Delhi?

Delhi's transport minister has written a letter to DTC, asking it to be ready for the re-implementation of the scheme if air pollution in the city intensified.

Will there be a third odd-even stint for Delhi?

At a meeting held today, Delhi Transport Minister Kailash Gehlot hinted at a third stint for the odd-even vehicle plying rule.

According to sources in the Delhi government, Gehlot had written a letter to the Delhi Transport Corporation (DTC) yesterday, asking it to be ready for the re-implementation of the rule if air pollution intensified. However, in his letter, the minister had not mentioned any date for the re-implementation of the scheme.

A Delhi government spokesperson said, “The transport minister has sent letters to the DTC, Delhi Metro Rail Corporation, Delhi Pollution Control Board and Delhi Municipal Corporation, urging them to prepare for the re-implementation. If the air pollution remains bad for 48 successive hours, this implementation is bound to come into effect.”

This will be the third implementation of the odd-even scheme in the capital. The first two were from January 1-15, 2016, and April 15-30, 2016. In this scheme, a vehicle is allowed to ply on the city's roads according to the last digit of its number plate, with odd and even digit cars plying on alternate days. In the previous two implementations of this scheme, all cars could ply on Sundays, and it is expected that this rule will apply this time as well.

Though acknowledged as sensible in terms of road traffic, the odd-even scheme has always faced resistance from people living in group housing societies or posh colonies who mostly travel in personal cars. Also, the scheme results in overburdening the common modes of public transport, such as the Metro and the DTC buses.

DK Chakraborty, who lives in Dronacharya Apartments in Mayur Vihar Phase I Extension, said, “The situation becomes bad whenever this scheme is implemented. People who own only one car are compelled to travel in DTC buses or the Metro on alternate days. I don't believe the odd-even scheme can curb city pollution either. The government must focus on permanent solutions, instead of implementing the odd-even scheme again.”