New Delhi, India (Metro Rail Today): The Delhi Disaster Management Authority (DDMA) on Saturday allowed the Delhi Metro and buses to have standing passengers –thirty persons per coach for the Delhi Metro, and 50% of the seating capacity in case of buses. Both buses and metro have been allowed to function at 100% capacity.
The DDMA order comes after the Delhi government sent a proposal to them to allow standing passengers in buses and the metro. The proposal was sent by Transport Minister Kailash Gahlot on November 16.
In an order, Saturday, Chief Secretary Vijay Dev said, “In view of the prevailing air pollution situation in NCT of Delhi, it has been felt to augment the carrying capacity of the public transport system (buses/Delhi Metro) so as to minimize the use of private vehicles in order to improve the ambient air quality of the city.”
He, therefore, partially modified the DDMA order dated November 15 “with regard to prohibited/restricted activities in NCT of Delhi with effect from intervening night of November 15 and November 16 till intervening night of November 30 and December 1 or till further orders”
“Transportation by the Delhi Metro shall be allowed with 100% seating capacity of the coach along with up to 30 standing passengers in a coach in the Delhi Metro,” he said.
“Intra-state (within NCT of Delhi) movement of buses (DTC as well as a cluster) shall be permitted with 100% seating capacity of the buses along with standing passengers up to 50% of the seating capacity of a bus. In the cases of buses, boarding shall be allowed only from the rear door while de-boarding shall be allowed only from the front door,” he added.
Dev said the “Transport Department, the DTC as well as the DMRC shall be responsible for strict compliance of Covid-appropriate behaviour (viz social distancing, wearing of mask, use of hand sanitiser etc) as well as relevant SOPs of the respective departments/authorities in this regard”.
On November 16, Gahlot had tweeted saying, “Owing to improved Covid situation & to control pollution from private vehicles, we’ve moved a proposal with the DDMA to allow standing passengers in buses and the Delhi Metro, to modify current order prohibiting the same. I request all Delhiites to cooperate & shift to public transport.”
The Delhi government is also in the process of hiring 1,000 private buses for one month to “curb vehicular pollution” and encourage the use of public transport.