Moments following Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal announced that Delhi will practice the Odd-Even rule for the third time, Nitin Gadkari, Union Minister, Ministry of Road Transport and Highways says that there is no need for Odd-Even rule to be followed in Delhi anymore.
Speaking to PTI, Gadkari said "Now there is no such need (odd-even scheme) because the new ring road we have built is helping reduce pollution in Delhi to a certain extent. Besides, my ministry is pursuing road works of about Rs 50,000 crore. Cleaning of the Yamuna and other works to curb pollution are also underway," he said. Gadkari also stated that he believes that Delhi will be pollution-free in the next two years.
Delhi CM, Arvind Kejriwal announced today that the national capital region of Delhi will hold the Odd-Even rule for the third time from November 4-15. During this period, only vehicles with registration numbers ending with an odd number will be allowed to ply on odd dates, while vehicle registration numbers ending with an even number will be allowed on even dates. For example, a vehicle on November 4, only vehicles with even last digits (0,2,4,6,8) on their number plate will be allowed to play on the road between 8 am-8 pm, while vehicles with registration ending in odd numbers (1,3,5,7,9) will be allowed to ply on odd dates like November 5. Therefore, Odd and Even number of vehicles will ply on alternate days thereby reducing congestion on the roads. Emergency vehicles will be exempt from the rule.
The move from the state government is aimed at combating high levels of air pollution in winters when crop burning takes place in neighbouring states. However, the road transport minister suggested that the Odd-Even rule in Delhi is not required any longer.
While in earlier instances where Delhi practised such a rule was back in January 2016. At the time CNG, hybrid, electric-powered vehicles, two-wheelers, and women drivers were also exempt from the rule. The reopening of schools after the winter breaks was also pushed back by two weeks, disallowing school busses to be operational during the time as well. The rule was followed for the second time in November 2017 in the same fashion. However, this had reportedly made a marginal effect on the smog and pollution levels in the region.