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Push for public transport, Delhi govt identifies land to build 7 depots for new buses

Delhi’s transport minister Kailash Gahlot says once 2,000 buses are rolled out by March next year, tenders for 1,375 more would be floated in April.

delhi Updated: Sep 09, 2017 09:05 IST
Sweta Goswami
Sweta Goswami
Hindustan Times
DTC bus,delhi buses,transport system
Parking space was one of the major hurdles in the way of Delhi government acquiring new buses to strengthen the public transport buses fleet. (Hindustan Times)

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Friday approved an action plan to build depots for parking additional 3,503 buses, clearing the decks for achieving the high court-mandated target of running 11,000 buses in the national Capital.

Parking space was one of the major hurdles in the way of Delhi government acquiring new buses to strengthen the public transport buses fleet.

According to the plan, bus depots will be built on seven land parcels with a total area of over 50 acres by December 2018. These depots will come up at Rani Khera, Mundela Kalan, Dera Mandi, East Vinod Nagar, Narela, Bawana and Rewla Khanpur. These will accommodate over 1,200 new buses.

“Rather than going to the Delhi Development Authority (DDA), the Delhi government has identified its own land. Now that the land issue is resolved, we will soon buy more buses apart from the 2,000 which the cabinet has already approved,” transport minister Kailash Gahlot told Hindustan Times.

The minister said once 2,000 buses are rolled out by March next year, tenders for 1,375 more would be floated in April, 2018. The remaining 2,128 buses will be added subsequently.

“The aim is to float tenders six months in advance until the new depots are ready. Depots for the buses that are to come by the end of this financial year will be ready by December, 2017 and these will be parked in Dwarka and Kharkhari Nahar,” Ghahlot said.

Among the seven locations, the 4.5-acre plot at Mundela Kalan and the seven-acre one at Dera Mandi are Gram Sabha land of the Delhi government. Another 14.39 acre plot at Rani Khera will be given to the Delhi Transport Corporation by the Delhi State Industrial and Infrastructure Development Corporation (DSIIDC).

In a meeting of the cabinet on Friday where the plan was presented by transport commissioner Varsha Joshi, Kejriwal also directed the transport minister to personally conduct a monthly outcome review of the project.

However, there are also over 90 acres of the land at different locations which are pending allotment by the DDA. “Payment for 32 acres of land at Rohini Sector 37 and 32 and Vasant Kunj has already been done to the DDA which now needs to hand over the possession of the land. Another 51 acre is stuck at the Millennium Depot for which the authority needs to change the land use,” a transport official said.

Currently, Delhi has 5426 buses under the DTC and cluster service which are parked in 262 acres of depots located across the city. While depots for the cluster buses are full, DTC officials said that their existing depots are underutilized as old buses get phased out from time to time.

“In the existing infrastructure, we have space to park 100 additional buses,” an official said.

First Published: Sep 09, 2017 08:43 IST