Court ruling on Blueline buses Thursday

March 2nd, 2011 - 9:48 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, March 2 (IANS) The Delhi High Court will pronounce its verdict Thursday on a petition by private bus operators seeking a stay on the Delhi government’s decision to phase out Blueline buses from the city.

Justice A.K. Sikri and Justice Suresh Kait had reserved the order after hearing arguments from both parties.

The Blueline buses in Delhi invited public wrath for long after causing a number of accidents that claimed several lives.

The Delhi government had issued a notification just before the Commonwealth Games in October 2010 phasing out about 1,600 Blueline buses from the capital, especially from the New Delhi Municipal Corporation areas, to streamline traffic for the games.

Standing counsel Najmi Waziri had submitted before the court that public safety was the paramount objective of the government and that it had enough buses to meet the requirements of the public.

The introduction of 2,000 low-floor buses last year had given relief to the public and phase-out of Blueline has drastically reduced the number of accidents.

Urging the court not to allow the bus operators’ plea to run their buses on the roads till the government implements the cluster system, Waziri said the government has more than 6,500 buses in its fleet to meet the requirement of public transport and 4000 more would be added in a phased manner.

The blueline bus operators argued that till the implementation of cluster system by the government, the private buses should be allowed to ply on the roads and their participation in the allotment of clusters also be allowed.

Following repeated accidents, the high court had directed the government to remove the Blueline buses. The government has phased out out most of the private buses, but a few were still allowed to operate in some areas till a substitute was found.

Taking suo motu cognizance of repeated road accidents involving Blueline buses in October 2007, the Delhi High Court had directed the government to phase out the Blueline and replace them with low-floor buses.

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