January 17, 2009

WB Govt to speed up phase out of old vehicles

KOLKATA: West Bengal Transport Minister Subhas Chakraborty on Tuesday said the government is committed to introduce pollution-free transport in two years, and accordingly bus and taxi owners would be offered schemes to phase out their old vehicles. "The process has begun with auto rickshaws. Exact schemes for phasing out buses and taxis will be announced later to ensure pollution-free transport in the state," the minister said.
Two stroke autos would no longer be found on city roads and the Calcutta High Court order would be implemented in this regard. Unauthorised autos would also be out of city roads, he said. Chakraborty, earlier, said the state government was planning to procure 400 new generation buses this year and the proposal was discussed with three manufacturers Ashok Leyland, Tata Motors and Eicher Motors.
The minister, however, did not specify when and in how many phases the new buses would be procured and what would be the quantum of investment for the purpose. The Calcutta High Court had in July last year directed that all 15-years-old buses must be phased out by March 31 this year. As such, a large number of old private buses would go off the roads by that time.

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