To ensure that the Mohalla Bus Scheme is implemented successfully, the International Council of Clean Transport (ICCT) will organise an international Expert Consultation on the 17th of April. The consultation meeting would be presided over by Delhi Transport Minister Shri Kailash Gahlot. The virtual consultation will feature 4-5 global experts who will make a 10-12 minute presentation on the framework for a neighbourhood or feeder bus service scheme, drawing on case studies or projects they have worked on. The presentation will include suggestions on service design, average route lengths, fare types, branding, and other related topics. This will be followed by a Question & Answer session with the experts.

Commenting on this, the Transport Minister said “Inclusion has always been one of the key parameters for Delhi Government while bringing a new scheme or policy forward. Hence, we have ensured that stakeholder consultation happens to bring more practicality in the scheme or a project. The Mohalla bus is a unique initiative by the Delhi Government. While a lot of consultation within the Indian stakeholders did happen already, this time we wanted to bring in the feedback of international experts who had seen or actually played key role in making feeder bus operations a success in their cities or country. I would like to thank ICCT for coming forward and creating a platform for the same.”

The Delhi Government is all set to revolutionise the city’s public transportation system with the introduction of small-size electric Mohalla buses on the city’s roads. Soon, the government will roll out 100 such buses, marking the first time in Delhi’s history that Mohalla buses will ply on the city’s roads. The government plans to introduce a total of 2,180 such buses by 2025, specifically designed to cater to areas where the width of the road is less or areas that are too crowded for regular 12-meter buses to ply. This move is expected to provide better connectivity and improve transportation access for people in these areas.

The Mohalla Bus Scheme was announced earlier in the budget speech by Delhi’s Finance Minister Shri Kailash Gahlot, who also holds the portfolio of Transport Minister. The scheme aims to deploy 9-meter-long electric buses to provide a neighbourhood or feeder bus service. The initiative is a step forward towards a more sustainable and accessible transportation system in the city.

The global experience shared during this consultation will help in developing the framework for Delhi’s Mohalla Bus service scheme. “The announcement of the ‘Mohalla Bus’ scheme in this year’s Delhi budget, which utilises 9 metre electric buses for neighbourhood and feeder operations, has the potential to be a game-changer not just for Delhi, but for the entire country. With many cities struggling to provide efficient feeder services, it is crucial to adopt global best practices and develop a robust framework for the operation of these buses in Delhi.” said Amit Bhatt, Managing Director (India), ICCT.

Some of the experts attending the consultation include:

  1. Sam Zimmerman from the World Bank, who has worked on the DC circulator service
  2. Dr. Ye Koti, who worked on feeder services in Seoul
  3. Dr. Dario Hidalgo from Javeriana University in Bogotá, who has worked on feeder service for a number of cities in Colombia
  4. Dr. OP Agarwal, Sr Fellow at Niti Aayog, who proposed the Dwarka circulator service.

This scheme is an initiative to provide affordable and convenient public transportation to residents of all localities, especially those living in the outskirts of the city. Small and medium-sized buses will ply on designated routes, covering all neighbourhoods and localities, especially poorly connected residential as well as commercial hubs. The buses will be equipped with modern amenities and will operate on a frequent and regular basis. The Mohalla Bus Scheme is of Delhi Government’s commitment to providing accessible and efficient public transportation to all citizens.

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