The state government wants to have dedicated bus lanes in Mumbai to make public transport smoother, additional government pleader SK Nair told the Bombay High Court on Wednesday.
This suggestion was made in addition to the three ideas — disallowing registration of cars, restricting entry of vehicles carrying less than three persons in the fast lane and barring 20-year-old vehicles from plying on weekdays — presented for decongestion of traffic.
According to the state, BEST has said it would put 200 more buses on the roads by the end of this year if the dedicated corridors are in place.
Speaking on the idea of disallowing certain vehicles in the fast lane, Nair said cars carrying less than three persons would be intercepted at signals and asked to shift to the other lanes. The government hopes that such curbs will encourage car-pooling.
The government told the HC that the Traffic Regulation Scheme mooted in 2000, which called for barring entry of vehicles on the basis of odd and even numbers on specific days of the week, was not feasible in a city like Mumbai.
After a meeting of top transport and traffic department officials, the government had come up with its alternate solution, Nair said.
Debi Goenka of the BEAG, who filed the PIL seeking curbs on traffic congestion said the traffic police had made it clear that they would not be able to implement the Traffic Regulation Scheme. “So, instead of the TRS, the government has suggested they will not allow citizens to buy new vehicles if they do not prove they have parking space off the roads,” he added.
Shiraz Rustomjee, counsel for BEAG, argued that they have been hearing suggestions from the state government since 2003. “The government should say in its affidavit when they plan to implement the suggestions. Let there be a timeframe,” Rustomjee said.