With the fate of Delhi's only bus rapid transit (BRT) corridor still hanging in the balance, Hazards Centre – a non-government organisation – came out in its support and demanded its proper implementation.
The organisation was supported by IIT professors and transport experts Dinesh Mohan and Geetam Tiwari, who came out in defence of the corridor and called the Central Road Research Institute (CRRI) study biased.
Mohan and Tiwari were on board when the Delhi government had planned, designed and executed the BRT corridor between Ambedkar Nagar and Moolchand Hospital.
"The CRRI study did not take the views of bus users. The survey took views of 25% bus users, even though 66% people travelling on the corridor are actually bus users," said Tiwari.
Hearing a public interest litigation, the Delhi High Court had asked the CRRI to carry out a study on the BRT corridor in May this year.
Mohan said he was surprised to see that the CRRI, which had not been allowed to work on the BRT corridor by the ministry of urban development because it was not "competent enough to work on a public transport project," was asked by the high court to review the project.
"Data shows that the existing BRT corridor is one of the safest roads for women, children and elderly people in Delhi. Only two accidents took place on the 5.8-km BRT stretch in 2010. Also, a large number of people living in the neighbouring areas come for a walk here," Mohan said.
Trashing the report submitted by the CRRI to the High Court, the NGO claimed that the report was skewed and only highlighted the views and suggestions of car users. NGO director Dunu Roy said a parallel survey conducted by them clearly showed that almost 90% people who travelled on the corridor were happy with separate lane for buses and emergency vehicles.
Tiwari said Delhi government should have actually extended the corridor further so more people could benefit from it.