Odd-even scheme Day 1: Delhi beats the odds

New Delhi: Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal yesterday said he was “overwhelmed” by the response of people towards the odd-even scheme here. “I am truly overwhelmed by the response we have received so far. There are very less even-numbered cars on the roads. The plan seems to have been successful,” he said.

Arvind Kejriwal car-pooled with Transport Minister Gopal Rai and Health Minister Satyendra Jain to the Delhi Secretariat. Pic/PTI
Arvind Kejriwal car-pooled with Transport Minister Gopal Rai and Health Minister Satyendra Jain to the Delhi Secretariat. Pic/PTI

He said the people of Delhi have accepted the scheme “whole-heartedly”, adding, “I am confident that in next five years people will show the way to rest of the country.”

Kejriwal also said that the movement will be re-assessed after January 15, “This will go on till January 15. Then we will stop it and reassess. Nowhere in the world is the scheme enforced permanently. It is practically not possible. Whenever pollution levels spike this is used as a weapon,” Kejriwal said.

Delhi’s Transport Minister Gopal Rai, who car-pooled with Kejriwal said, “We thank people of Delhi for making the scheme a success. The same Delhi, which was called selfish, has shown the way. We thank all people for choosing their children’s health.”

Delhiites Thrilled to share; call it a picnic
Even-numbered vehicles virtually went off the roads in the Indian capital as Delhi kick-started a path-breaking odd-even vehicle restriction policy to battle rising pollution.

Vanaja S said, “I shared an auto with two of my colleagues to work from Dwarka. To my surprise, Delhi roads were traffic free. Many of us are thrilled to share a vehicle and come to the office even if it’s just for 15 days.”

“It was a bit like a picnic, as it was fun to travel with my colleagues chatting,” said Janaki Ram, another office-goer who travels to Connaught Place for work.

Gyanendra, a dentist at Maulana Azad Institute of Medical Sciences, said: “I think it is a good step to check pollution in Delhi. We should not term the initiative unsuccessful even before it starts.”

Central government employee SB Shashank said: “My office is just half a kilometre from my house, so I might as well cycle to office tomorrow.”

Violators greeted with roses
‘Gandhigiri’ was on display at 200 locations in the city with civil defence volunteers offering roses to those violating odd-even rules implemented for 15 days from January 1 to bring down pollution level in the national capital.

Volunteers with traffic police explaining the rules to an even number car owner. Pic/PTI
Volunteers with traffic police explaining the rules to an even number car owner. Pic/PTI

The Delhi government has deployed around 10,000 volunteers with roses in their hands across the national capital to request violators to follow odd-even rules.

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