Experts from South Korea, Colombia and the US will help the Delhi government to firm up its plans to launch the Mohalla Bus Service as announced in the budget for 2023-24.A consultation on the proposed bus service to be attended by experts from these countries will be chaired by Transport Minister Kailash Gahlot on April 17.
“A lot of consultation with Indian stakeholders happened already. Now we want to bring in the feedback of international experts who had seen or actually played key role in making feeder bus operations a success in their cities or countries,” Gahlot said.
The Arvind Kejriwal government plans to introduce 100 mohalla (neighbourhood) buses in Delhi soon, according to a government statement. These buses will serve narrow and crowded roads and poorly connected residential as well as commercial hubs, ensuring last-mile connectivity.
“The number of mohalla buses is planned to be scaled up eventually to 2,180 by 2025,” it said.
The International Council on Clean Transport (ICCT) will organise the international expert consultation. The virtual consultation will feature four-five global experts, it said.
The mohalla buses will be specifically designed to cater to areas where the width of the road is less or areas that are too crowded for regular 12-metre buses to ply. This move is expected to provide better connectivity and improve transportation access for people in these areas.
The Mohalla Bus Service was announced in the budget presented by Finance Minister Kailash Gahlot, who also holds the transport portfolio.
The scheme aims to deploy nine-metre-long electric buses. The initiative is a step forward towards a more sustainable and accessible transportation system in the city, it said.
“The announcement of the Mohalla Bus scheme in this year’s Delhi budget has the potential to be a game-changer not just for Delhi but for the entire country,” Amit Bhatt, managing director (India) of ICCT, said, according to the statement.