New Delhi, Aug 20 (IANS) The national capital on Tuesday got 25 new buses equipped with hydraulic lifts for differently abled passengers, panic buttons, CCTV cameras and GPS.
The 25 buses, flagged off by Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, were part of the 1,000 buses the city will get by the year-end under the Cluster scheme.
The Delhi Transport Minister said that delivery of these 1,000 buses would be completed by December.
Kejriwal said that more buses would be added every month.
The existing Cluster fleet consists of 1,679 buses, while the induction of remaining ones under the scheme was delayed primarily due to non-availability of bus depot space, the state government said.
The last tender under the Cluster Scheme was released on 2011 and the contract was signed in 2013.
“New buses are being brought in Delhi after a gap of more than six years,” an official statement said.
It said the Transport Department has created depot space at Rewla Khanpur, Dwarka Sector-22, Kharkhari Nahar, Bawana Sector-1 and Rani Khera – I, II and III, from where these 1,000 new buses will be operated.
“The 1,000 new buses will be catering to the rural area in Delhi which was facing shortage of buses so far. Additional routes providing connectivity to Metro stations, hospitals and traffic interchange hubs at the Inter State Bus Terminals at Kashmere Gate, Anand Vihar Terminal and Sarai Kale Khan will be served by these buses,” it said.
The Supreme Court, in July 1998, had directed the Delhi government to augment its fleet of buses to 10,000 by April 2001, but over 20 years and six governments, the total buses in the DTC and Cluster fleets number 5,576.
According to official data, till March 2019, the total functional buses in Delhi were 5,576 comprising 3,897 DTC buses and 1,679 Cluster buses — the orange buses being operated under the Cluster scheme introduced in 2011 to replace the erstwhile Blue Line buses.