Lucknow civic body bans e-rickshaws citing air pollution
In a bizarre move, the Lucknow Municipal Corporation recently banned the use of electric rickshaws on 11 prominent routes in the city including Hazratganj, Gomtinagar and Alambagh. In a recently issued notification by the civic body, ‘Air pollution’ has been cited as one of the reasons behind this decision.
"To improve the management of traffic in the city of Lucknow, it has been decided to revise the guidelines using provisions under section 15 of Motor Vehicle Rules 1998, for plying electric rickshaws in 11 routes in the city," reads the notification undersigned by the Lucknow Commissioner D K Thakur.
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The city administration has previously also imposed a similar ban on e-rickshaws back in 2018 when these vehicles were declared forbidden on 36 routes while a restriction was imposed on 10 other routes. However, this time around, mentioning 'air pollution' as one of the reasons for the ban seems unthoughtful. "The revision is necessitated to tackle air pollution, traffic jam, public safety and convenience of the citizens. From May 12, plying or parking electric rickshaws in these 11 routes is hereby banned," the notification adds.
The domestic three-wheeler market is in a transition phase with EVs accounting for 46% of sales. Needless to say, e-rickshaws have become quite popular, especially in the urban areas where they serve the direct needs of the last mile connectivity. These electrified rickshaws are easy to operate and maintain, unlike the traditional rickshaws which have now become comparatively costlier given the rising fuel prices in the country.
While e-rickshaws sure may have contributed to traffic congestion in some parts of the city, they have zero tailpipe emissions, unlike the traditional motor rickshaws that run on ICE-powered engines.