Delhi Budget focuses on more electric buses and greener last-mile mobility

Delhi aims to convert 80 per cent of DTC bus fleet to electric by 2025, making it one of the largest among all cities globally to offer green public t
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Delhi aims to have 80 per cent of DTC bus fleet to be electric by 2025, making it one of the largest among all cities globally. (Prateek Kumar)
Delhi aims to have 80 per cent of DTC bus fleet to be electric by 2025, making it one of the largest among all cities globally.

Delhi Budget 2023 has proposed to enhance the national capital's public transport system with more dose of electric vehicles. The state government now plans to launch 'mohalla bus' service scheme as last-mile mobility solution, besides increasing the number of electric buses operated by the Delhi Transport Corporation (DTC). Kailash Gahlot, Finance Minister of Delhi, announced an allocation of over 9,337 crore for transport, roads and bridges in the Budget on Wednesday, March 22.

The mohalla bus service, which will be operated by electric buses, will help commuters stay connected to all the major Delhi metro stations and bus depots besides malls and other commercial complexes across the city. The buses will be smaller in size measuring around 9 metres in length. Delhi plans to introduce at least 100 such electric mohalla buses by next year and aims to increase the number to more than 2,000 in the next three years. Gahlot said, “These buses will ply on more than 600 bus routes in Delhi. Of these, 300 are electric buses and by the end of the year, their number will be 1,900 (1,800 buses 12m long and 100 buses 9m long), reducing Carbon Dioxide (CO2) emissions by approximately 1,07 lakh tonnes."

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Besides mohalla bus service, the Delhi government also wants to increase its electric bus fleet for regular public transport. Delhi currently has the largest EV public transport fleet with more than 7,000 electric buses plying across the city every day. Delhi plans to increase EV bus fleet strength to 10,480 by 2025. "By 2025, 80 per cent of the bus fleet in Delhi or 8,280 buses will be electric, making it one of the largest among all cities globally. As a result, approximately 4.6 lakh tonnes of CO2 emissions will be reduced every year," Gahlot said. This could cost the Delhi government around 28,556 crore over the next 12 years.

The new electric buses to be introduced will come with features like GPS, CCTV cameras and panic buttons to ensure safety and security of commuters, esepcially women. These features will be connected to the centralised Command and Control Centre located at Kashmere Gate, for real-time response and monitoring.

The government is also planning to increase the EV infrastructure for public transport by updating electricity grid, drawing high-tension power lines and setting up of sub-stations at each of the bus depots. This will help setting up fast EV charging stations for electric buses. "We have started the work of electrification of all 57 bus depots in Delhi on a war footing. Out of this, three depots are already electrified and 17 bus depots will be electrified by June 2023. All 57 bus depots will be electrified by December 2023," Gahlot said. Overall, the government will spend around 1,500 crore on the electrification of bus depots.

First Published Date: 23 Mar 2023, 08:53 AM IST
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