iconimg Monday, August 31, 2015

Harish V Nair, Hindustan Times
New Delhi, April 19, 2013
The Delhi High Court has sought the Delhi government’s view on a fresh petition seeking scrapping of the Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) corridor between Ambedkar Nagar and Moolchand. The petition contends that the transit corridor has been constructed in violation of the master plan.
It said as per the plan, BRT could not be constructed on a road which was less than 45 metres wide.

The petition comes six months after the court dismissed a similar plea to scrap the project, stating that the BRT was not an irrational decision by the government. The earlier plea had said the project had to go as it “worsened the traffic situation and caused utter chaos on the stretch”.  The new petition now contends that the project was built in violation of Master Plan Delhi 2021 as per which a BRT cannot be constructed on a road less than 45 metres in width. Colonel BB Sharan of NGO Nyaya Bhoomi, who has filed the fresh petition, has said the court in its October 18, 2012 judgment, had stressed that Master Plan Delhi 2021 is a statutory plan and has the force of law.

“As per the master plan, the BRT cannot exist on a road less than 45 metres in width,” argued Sharan. The petition also states that optimal use and utilization of existing road network is not being made as the BRT has been constructed haphazardly with bus stops right in the middle of the road, that hinders the smooth flow of traffic.

“When buses keep to the left in rest of Delhi, why should they ply or stop in the centre of the road between Ambedkar Nagar to Mool Chand, causing hardships to motorists”, the petition questions.

The government later sought dismissal of the petition saying the “petition was factually wrong on the point of width or right of way (ROW) recommended by the plan”.

However,  the Delhi High Court has asked the state government to file a detailed reply by July 29.