Commuters worried as restrictions on cabs likely to spell chaos in NCR


Delhi government’s plan to stop app-based cabs registered in other states from entering the capital if the odd-even rule is enforced next week will make commuting between the capital and the NCR cities difficult and disrupt the transport grid that runs across the inter-connected cities. The restriction will end up significantly depleting the public transport fleet, instead of boosting it, which is the need of the hour when pollution levels are at their peak.

Residents and cab aggregators fear multiple hits and see a chaotic week ahead if the decision is implemented because a large chuck of cars that ply for aggregators like Uber, Ola and InDrive have Uttar Pradesh and Haryana number plates, registered mostly in Gurgaon, Noida, and Ghaziabad.

On Wednesday, cab aggregators told reporters they were still waiting for a formal order to figure out the modalities while reiterating their cabs run on electricity or CNG, and hence cut carbon emissions.

A transport industry source said over one lakh cabs ply daily across Delhi-NCR, and if those with Uttar Pradesh (UP) and Haryana (HR) registration numbers are barred from entering the capital during odd-even, about 60-70 percent of these cars would be affected. Ironically, most cabs that will go off roads as a result run on CNG. Cab owners, meanwhile, fear a big hit to their earnings.

Directions to take all BS III petrol and BS IV diesel vehicles off roads will also bring more people into the public transport grid. If there are restrictions on cabs as well, most of this pressure will shift to the metro.

“Metro trains will become jam-packed. And we are still talking about people who live within 10-12 km of the Delhi border because, after that, there is no metro connectivity in a city like Gurgaon. People living in new sectors rely on cabs, if not their personal vehicles, to commute to Delhi or Noida,” said a Noida resident.

“Buses are in poor shape and reaching the bus stops is a task. People don’t even know which routes these buses take.

There is no parking provision around these bus stops,” said a Delhi resident who commutes to Gurugram every day for work. People who have BS IV diesel cars are also in a fix.