The city roads wore a deserted look on Friday as several corporate and government offices had a holiday for Ramnavami and even as the second phase of odd-even road rationing scheme commenced in Delhi.
The police said the actual impact of the odd-even scheme will be seen only on Monday. They, however, expect smooth traffic after the success of the first phase of the scheme in January.
The Delhi police issued over 25 challans at two Delhi-Gurgaon borders on MG Road and the expressway. The first challan was issued around 8.15 am on MG Road.
In order to combat the rising pollution and traffic congestion in the national capital, only odd-numbered private vehicle are allowed on odd dates and even-numbered vehicles on even dates. The violators were fined Rs 2,000 and the scheme is in effect from April 15 to 30.
“We will be stricter this time. There is huge traffic between the two cities (Delhi and Gurgaon) and to control vehicles, more police force and volunteers are guarding the Delhi-Gurgaon borders,” a traffic official deployed on MG Road said.
Similar to last time, traffic volunteers presented a red rose to defaulters and a few of them even held banners promoting ‘Pollution-Free Delhi’.
“We are handing over flowers to people and requesting them to follow the rules. The traffic is fairly less and fewer challans were issued compared to January,” a civil defence volunteer said.
A number of commuters fined at the Delhi-Gurgaon border blamed Gurgaon’s poor public transport system. They said the metro trains are always packed and the bus service is unsafe and irregular, forcing them to drive their even-numbered vehicles on Friday.
“The city has a bad public transport system. Am I supposed to sit at home and take an off on every alternate day because of the road rationing scheme? The government should make the public transport efficient,” Suneeta from Gurgaon said.