Fate of blueline buses in Delhi to be decided on Monday

Delhi Government is likely to decide on Monday whether to bring back the `killer` blueline bus services in the national capital or to withdraw them permanently.

New Delhi: Delhi Government is likely to
decide tomorrow whether to bring back the `killer` blueline
bus services in the national capital or to withdraw them

The fate of 1,600 blueline buses, majority of which
went off Delhi roads last month in view of the Commonwealth
Games, is likely to be decided at a meeting between Transport
Minister Arvinder Singh Lovely and Blueline bus owners.

The buses were supposed to be back on roads from
Monday last, but Lovely said the blueline buses, which are
highly unpopular among the public for over-speeding, will not
ply on Delhi roads till October 25.

The meeting also comes two days after a youth was
killed by a speeding blueline bus in south Delhi.

Sources say the government wants to get rid of the
private buses in the national capital and replace them with
the new fleet of DTC buses.

Over 1,000 new low-floor buses, which were used to
ferry athletes and dignitaries during the Games, have been
included in the DTC`s fleet now. The DTC will also induct more
buses into its fleet in the coming days.

These, the sources say, will be put on various routes
in the national capital which are currently covered by the
blueline buses.

The Delhi Government has already decided to withdraw
the buses from the Lutyen`s zone and a decision on such
vehicles in other areas may be taken tomorrow.

Transport Ministry officials say the government is
fully committed to phasing out the Blueline buses as the
state-owned Delhi Transport Corporation now has adequate
number of buses to meet the requirements of Delhiites.

A total of 1,600 Blueline buses, plying in south and
central Delhi and near the venues of the Games, went off roads
in September after a directive from the Delhi Government.

In the first phase, the government may decide to
withdraw 1,000 blueline buses.

Delhi Government has been planning for the past couple
of years to phase out the Blueline buses but was not able to
do in the absence of an alternative plan.

The Delhi High Court had stayed the Government`s move
to phase out the Blueline buses in February this year arguing
that the DTC alone was not capable to meet the requirement of
public transport.

The Government is also likely to file an affidavit in
the Delhi High Court seeking to phase these out permanently.

Transport Department officials feel the absence of
Blueline buses not only decongested the roads but there has
also been a decline in the number of road fatalities during
the period.