Gearing up for Odd-Even, Phase II

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When last time I wrote about this much hyped and opinionated pilot programme of the Delhi CM, it was the outburst (both negative and positive) of the commoners that provoked me to. However the Phase II of Odd-Even car rationing scheme, starting today, has received a better response than before. With commuters looking up for more options regarding car pool and shared cabs, even children are making their parents aware of certain apps launched to ease the woes of the daily commuters (courtesy of the state government organised picnic for school students at India Gate to create awareness among them about the Odd-Even Scheme and measures taken to combat pollution).

After receiving a promising ‘go ahead’ from the Delhiites, CM Kejriwal launched the second phase with the entire rules same as before. However, this time women driving their school going children and vehicles carrying students wearing school uniform will also remain outside the ambit of odd-even policy. Similar to before, the CM and his cabinet ministers would not be exempted from odd-even restrictions and the odd-even policy will operate from 8:00 to 20:00 hours.

“Women drivers, CNG-operated vehicles, chief ministers of states and vehicles carrying students in uniform will remain exempted from the restrictions of the second phase of odd-even traffic scheme,” Kejriwal told reporters.

For those dubious in this state of mayhem, the CM has launched a helpline for this phase – 011-422400400. Apart from this, the Delhi government has also launched ‘PoochhO Carpool app to help people explore carpooling options during the 15-day exercise. After download, users will have to register themselves to find carpooling options within a radius of 1-5 km. To ensure safety, the app doesn’t require the exchange of phone numbers but car drivers can communicate through the app’s chat feature.

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Remember the 13 year old student of Amity International School, who created a website for an unchallenging carpool facility? Well, the site http://www.odd-even.com/ is up and running. The private entrepreneurs have also lend their hands for the public convenience. Apps like Shuttl, Ridlr and even Uber and Ola have come up with their own carpooling services. Bike taxi operator Rapido is providing free rides to people travelling to and from some of the metro stations like Hauz Khaz and Malviya Nagar during April 15-30. Bengaluru-based startup 360Ride, which offers a ride-sharing platform for personal vehicle owners, said it will encourage commuters to earn up to Rs 1,200 by sharing their ride on four-wheelers and Rs 600 on two-wheelers.

“The ‘Ride and Earn’ programme aims to promote ride sharing in the city, thereby reducing the dual problem of congestion and pollution on Delhi NCR roads,” 360Ride CEO and co-founder Lokesh Bevara said.

Kudos to the government for making an effort to curb this city drenched in smoggy layers. What happens at the end of these 15 days is something to watch out for, but as health-concerned citizens let us show the world once again what Delhiites are capable of!

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