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Sunday, Sep 22, 2019

Electric vehicles get Rs 100-crore push in Delhi budget, Metro Phase 4 Rs 500 crore

The Delhi government, in its budget released on Tuesday, allocated Rs 500 crore for the Delhi Metro’s Phase-IV project. Besides, the government also promised to roll out 4,000 new buses in phases.

delhi Updated: Feb 27, 2019 02:01 IST
Soumya Pillai
Soumya Pillai
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
Currently, phase-IV project of the Delhi Metro — clearance for which was given by the Delhi government last year after a wait of almost two years — is awaiting the Union government’s nod.
Currently, phase-IV project of the Delhi Metro — clearance for which was given by the Delhi government last year after a wait of almost two years — is awaiting the Union government’s nod.(Picture for representation)
         

The Delhi government, in its budget released on Tuesday, allocated Rs 500 crore for the Delhi Metro’s Phase-IV project. Besides, the government also promised to roll out 4,000 new buses in phases.

Currently, phase-IV project of the Delhi Metro — clearance for which was given by the Delhi government last year after a wait of almost two years — is awaiting the Union government’s nod.

While presenting the Delhi government’s budget for the 2019-20 fiscal in the assembly on Tuesday, Delhi finance minister Manish Sisodia said the allocated budget of Rs 500 crore was the Delhi government’s share to facilitate the expansion of the Delhi Metro network under Phase-IV.

He also took a jibe at the Centre for sitting on the Phase-IV proposal and for not allocating a single penny for Metro operations despite calling their “pet project”.

In his budget speech, Sisodia said, “Our government has approved the proposal for Phase-IV of the Delhi Metro project comprising six corridors and having a length of 103.93 kilometres. With the completion of the Phase-IV project, the total length of the Delhi Metro corridor will become 453.93 kilometres. I propose Rs 500 crore in the budget for 2019-20 for the Metro Phase-IV project.”

Besides investing in the Metro, the Delhi government also promised to increase the city’s dwindling bus fleet and announced that 4,000 new buses will be rolled out in phases. Of these, 1,000 will be standard-floor CNG buses, 1,000 low-floor air-conditioned CNG buses, and 1,000 more will be low-floor AC electric buses.

This financial year, an outlay of Rs 1,807 crore was proposed for the transport department. Last year, Rs 977 crore was allocated for the same purpose.

Sohinder Gill, director general, Society of Manufacturers of Electric Vehicles (SMEV), said the Delhi government’s budgetary allocation of Rs 100 crore towards electric vehicles is a positive start towards promoting the use of e-vehicles in the city. However, he said, the draft policy that was introduced last year by the Delhi government would require huge funds support in order to achieve its intended goal.

“We look forward to the introduction of the final electric vehicles policy so that the industry would have some clarity on the government’s direction towards e-mobility,” Gill said.

To strengthen infrastructure for the increased bus fleet, the government also announced a new scheme for construction of ‘bus queue shelters’ to protect commuters from the weather while waiting for buses. “We will be constructing 1,397 bus queue shelters for which I propose Rs 50 crore in the budget,” Sisodia said.

First Published: Feb 27, 2019 02:01 IST