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December 4, 2020

Odd-even rule kicks in as Delhi air remains severe

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With an aim to combat air pollution, Delhi government’s odd-even scheme was launched in the national capital on Monday with common citizens giving it a mix response.

IMAGE: A Delhi Traffic police personnel fines a driver for violating the odd-even scheme in Delhi. Photograph: ANI/Twitter

Many commuters on the road supported the scheme but also urged the government to take better and more stringent steps to combat the menace throughout the year.


“Definitely it (odd-even scheme) will make a difference. But it would be better if the government takes effective measures to stop stubble burning. Most of the pollution is because of that, what will these 10 days of odd-even do? ,” a commuter said.

Another commuter riding on a two-wheeler advocated for the implementation of the scheme for throughout the year.

“It will reduce traffic on the roads and things should get better after this. The arrangement should happen permanently instead of merely 10 days,” said another commuter on a two-wheeler.

It may be noted that two-wheelers are exempted from the odd-even scheme.

IMAGE: The car rationing scheme — odd even — kicks in on Monday and will be followed from 8 am to 8 pm each day. Photograph: PTI Photo

Some commuters also criticised the government’s move stating that vehicular pollution was not the main reason for the poor air quality in Delhi.

“Odd-even scheme will do little to alleviate the problem. As per what I have read, the pollution in the city is majorly because of dust due to construction works. These measures won’t help,” said a Delhiite.

Posters criticising odd-even scheme were also seen near ITO crossing, on Monday morning.

A poster in Hindi read, “We do not need the drama of ‘odd-even’. We need a clean atmosphere. It has become difficult to breathe in Delhi.” 

IMAGE: Security personnel wear masks as the air quality is severe. Delhi is enveloped in a thick layer of smog. Photograph: PTI Photo

Within a few hours of the scheme coming into the force, the traffic police fined drivers for violating the scheme.

One of the violators caught near India Gate, however, claimed he had no information of the scheme.

The implementation of the scheme has also invited political criticism with senior BJP leader and Rajya Sabha MP Vijay Goel saying that he will hold a symbolic protest against the car rationing scheme and will ride through the streets of Delhi on Monday in his car to oppose the move.

He termed the scheme as an “election stunt” and a “drama”.

IMAGE: A man wearing a mask walks on a smoggy morning in New Delhi. Photograph: Adnan Abidi/Reuters

The vehicle rationing scheme will be applicable from 8 am to 8 pm and it will not be in force on November 10, Sunday. It is scheduled to conclude on November 14.

Under the scheme, non-transport four-wheeled vehicles with registration numbers ending with an odd digit (1, 3, 5, 7, 9) will not be allowed on the roads on November 4, 6, 8, 12 and 14.

Siimilarly, vehicles with registration numbers ending with an even digit (0, 2, 4, 6, 8) will not be allowed on the roads on November 5, 7, 9, 11, 13 and 15.

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