Blueline buses to breath their last in June 2012 (Lead)

March 3rd, 2011 - 10:19 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, March 3 (IANS) The Delhi High Court Thursday sealed the fate of privately-run Blueline buses, blamed for innumerable accidents on the capital’s roads, by saying the government should not renew their permits. But 328 buses with valid permits were allowed to ply till June 2012 - the deadline by which a few vehicles would be phased out every month.

The court said the city’s transport department and the public transport bus fleet under it were capable of handling the commuting needs of the people in the absence of Blueline buses.

“Issue of safety in public transport system cannot be confined to Blueline buses. No doubt, Blueline buses proved a menace and totally non-feasible and therefore face total wipe off from the roads,” said the court.

Rejecting the Blueline bus operators’ plea seeking a stay on the Delhi government’s decision to phase out the vehicles, Justice Suresh Kait and Justice A.K. Sikri said: “Blueline buses were allowed to ply after 2007 because their existence on road was justified as at that time their withdrawal would have caused inconvenience to public at large.”

“It is thus pointed out that in year 2006 there were 3,444 buses of Delhi Transport Corporation (DTC) whose number has gone up to 6,337 buses in the year 2010. Ridership in DTC buses during this period has gone up by three times because of low floor big capacity buses introduced,” the court said.

The court, while allowing the Delhi government not to renew Blueline bus permits, also appreciated the Delhi Metro for its increasing facility and attracting commuters at large.

“In the year 2006, metro commuting capacity was 0.5 million which has been increased to 1.5 million. This facilities together with other modes of transport in sufficient to take care of the ridership requirement.”

However, while issuing order in favour of Delhi government the court said that now it is the obligation of the state to control and prevent accidents and make the traffic in Delhi better organised.

The court asked the state government to introduce around 11,000 buses as per requirement of the public here.

The Blueline buses had earned a bad name due to rash driving by their drivers.

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