Agartala: Tripura`s capital city is planning to go green in a big way. Households would be provided piped cooking gas connections and thousands of vehicles would switch over to CNG from petrol or diesel by next year, a minister said Monday.
"Our aim is to make Agartala a green city (and) first of its kind in eastern India," Industries and Commerce Minister Jitendra Chowdhury told reporters here.
"By next year, all the households in Agartala would be covered by piped natural gas (PNG) connections for cooking. Already 12,200 households are connected with PNG," he said.
He said a large number of industrial units, hotels and crematoria were already running on PNG.
"In issuing vehicle permits, priority is given to those running on CNG (compressed natural gas) which is cost-effective and extremely environment-friendly," he said.
Agartala is home to about 400,000 people and has around 100,000 vehicles.
Flanked by officials of Tripura Natural Gas Company Ltd (TNGCL), the minister said about 4,000 auto-rickshaws and over 1,100 other vehicles had already been fitted with CNG kits.
The TNGCL, a joint venture of GAIL (India) Limited and the Tripura and Assam governments, has been supplying PNG and CNG in the city.
The TNGCL has three CNG supply stations in the city and four more would be commissioned soon, officials said.
According to an official, TNGCL was set to execute a Rs.57-crore business plan over the next five years to develop infrastructure for the green initiative.
"Agartala is the only city among 415 cities and small towns in the eight northeastern states where CNG and PNG are being used in a big way," the official added.
According to TNGCL managing director M.C. Deogam, after Maharashtra, Tripura ranks second in the rate of CNG-conversion of vehicles.