Do you have enough bus drivers? HC to Delhi Govt

The court was hearing a bunch of petition filed by blueline operators challenging the government decision to phase out the 2000 `killer` blueline buses.

Updated: Dec 22, 2010, 23:00 PM IST

New Delhi: The city government on Wednesday
faced some tough questions from the Delhi High Court on the
sufficiency of state-run buses and drivers to cater to people
even as it banked on Metro services to justify phasing out of
the blueline buses.

"Metro has become the lifeline of the city and its
ridership would increase to 30 lakh per day next year and we
also have more than 6,000 DTC buses to cater to the need of
people in the city," senior advocate K T S Tulsi, appearing
for the city government, told a bench headed by Justice A K
Sikri.

"The number of DTC buses is not important as there
will be by January 2011 a total of 15,785 public transport
vehicle (excluding blueline) in three categories with combined
ridership capacity of 102,13,500," he further said.

The bench, however, raised questions on the
availability of drivers for the buses on which the government
was silent.

It also pulled up the government for not carrying out
a survey to decide as to how the state transport system would
be able to cater to the requirement of people in the city.

The court was hearing a bunch of petition filed by
blueline operators challenging the government decision to
phase out the 2000 `killer` blueline buses.

While justifying its decision, the government had said
that the total ridership capacity of all modes of
transport comes to 14.7 million as against the estimated
population of 18 million, one third of which are non-working
either on account of old age or house wives or children."

Opposing it, the blueline operators contended that
there has been drastic decline in the number of accidents.

The government had also said that the private blueline
buses are six times more accident prone than state-run DTC
buses.

"Blueline buses cause more accidents than other mode
of transport. While one person gets killed per 180 DTC buses,
the figure is alarmingly high for blueline buses which is
around one death per 33 buses. It is six time more than DTC
buses," Tulsi had told the court.

PTI