Addressing public and Metro officials on the 25th Foundation Day Event Of Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) in New Delhi, M Venkaiah Naidu- Vice President of India called for adopting a public transport-centric approach to decongest traffic-choked cities. The Vice President applauded the operation of Delhi Metro and said that Metro rails are a major part of the infrastructure in a developing country and are required in other cities as well. He was also concerned about the shift from the use of public transport to private vehicles and said it was undesirable. According to a study, Delhi Metro has helped in shifting about seven lakh vehicles from the roads of Delhi, thereby reducing congestion.
Explaining the situation and its consequences, Naidu said, "The average two-wheeler and car ownership levels in metropolitan cities which were 112 and 14 per 1000 population in 1994 are expected to grow to 393 and 48 respectively by 2021. This would mean 53 million two-wheelers and six million cars in the next 15 years in metropolitan cities." The Vice President also spoke about the security in public transports which will help the government in making urban spaces safe and viable for women, elderly and differently abled person.
Naidu also pointed out that increasing use of private vehicles is one of the main causes of growing air and noise pollution. He mentioned that about 25 per cent of the greenhouse gases worldwide are estimated to come out of vehicles. Urban dwellers are spending more time in the polluted atmosphere which is adversely affecting their health and is leading to global warming. Referring to the hazardous effects of global warming and climate change, Naidu said "we need to swiftly move from fossil fuel based automobiles to electricity or battery based vehicular system".
Last Mile connectivity is one of the most burgeoning electric vehicle segments and the increasing demand for electric three-wheelers is the biggest testimony to it. Government and electric automakers such as Mahindra are already working for the growth of the segment. In the FAME II scheme, last mile connectivity has been the prime focus of the government and automakers like Mahindra Electric is launching new models like the Treo range to offer as last mile connectivity solution. Last Year, Mahindra Electric also signed MoU with Three Wheels United to deploy 2000 Treo Electric Three-Wheelers on Delhi roads for metro-rail users.
The Vice President also asked planners to lay out a plan for providing hassle-free travel facilities and stressed on ensuring last mile connectivity to commuters, especially for those traveling by metro and local rail networks.