The Puducherry government today notified its maiden Transport policy to ensure ‘symbiotic growth of all transport modes`. A Tansport Department notification said projects under the policy envisages building up of an efficient and sustainable multi modal transport system. “The government`s vision in the sector is to shape a modern, efficiency, economical and safe transportation system balancing the needs of economy to meet the mobility needs of all sections by 2036,” it said. It said the challenges currently being faced by the transport sector are inadequate transport infrastructural capacity to meet future travel demands,increasing urbanization significantly pressuring urban mobility system endangering urban competitiveness and fiscal constraints, among others.
It said the new policy would discourage the tendency among people to adapt to personal vehicles and instead encourage mass transport facilities in urban areas. The policy envisages strengthening the Transport Department to make it more of a transport system regulator than a mere revenue collection and license issuing agent`. The policy stated that goods transport by road, rail and coastal modes would be modernized to facilitate inter-modal integration. Multi axle trucks and container transport would be encouraged by creating necessary infrastructure, terminal facilities and wayside amenities for vehicles and for parking and servicing. As part of the policy, the government said it would provide advanced driving simulators and test track facilities to impart innovative training for drivers and driving behaviour to enhance road safety.
A ‘Puducherry Urban Transport Agency’, an umbrella agency to regulate overall performance of the transport system, would be set up. It would conduct scientific studies to design networks and routes, assess demand, contract services, monitor performance and manage the transport system. The Agency would have representatives from all major operators and stakeholders. The policy said the government would encourage ‘private investment to develop transport infrastructure. It would also ensure availability of land and guaranteed minimum returns to Special Purpose Vehicles constituted for the purpose by way of capital grant and annuities to bridge shortfalls in revenue. The existing tax and subsidy policy would be restructured to enhance revenue on the one hand and encourage public transport on the other, the notification said.