Car-free day across city on Jan 22: CM
To make Delhi pollution-free, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Sunday announced that ‘Car-Free Day’ will be organised across the national Capital on January 22, saying that he would cycle to his office that day. He added the government with the help of people will run a campaign to encourage masses to use bicycle or public transport to reach their offices on January 22.
The Delhi government on Sunday organised the second ‘Car-Free Day’ in Dwarka – on a road between Sector 3-13 and Sector 7-9, which witnessed a cycle rally led by the CM. Schoolchildren, IAS and DANICS officers also participated in the event. The Traffic Police did not allow private car movement between Sector 3-13 and Sector 7-9 on Sunday.
“If we reduce cars on Delhi roads, pollution level can come down significantly in the national Capital. I am not saying that the entire Delhi will follow our appeal, but if 5-10 per cent follow, 10 per cent pollution will come down, which will be a big achievement," Kejriwal said.
He added: “We will organise it in entire Delhi on January 22 and I am sure that we will succeed... I will also cycle to my office on January 22." Kejriwal also vowed to soon make Car-Free Day from being symbolic to a reality. At present, the government holds such Car-Free Day on the 22nd of every month on separate stretches in different areas of the city.
Transport Minister Gopal Rai said the government would appeal to people not to use their private cars on January 22. “We will appeal to the people of Delhi to use bicycle or public transport to reach their offices that day. Besides, the government will also organise a cycle rally on separate stretches as part of ‘Car-Free Day’," Rai said.
Rai said when some NGOs and the Centre for Science and Environment (CSE) measured the pollution level between the Red Fort and the India Gate during the first ‘Car-Free Day’ last month, they found that there was 60 per cent decrease in the pollution level on the stretch.
“There were talks about the exact reason that led to a rise in Delhi’s pollution level. It was clear when the pollution level receded between the Red Fort and the India Gate because cars did not run on this stretch last month,” he added.
“22 Dec Car free day in East Del. 22 Jan-lets all leave car 4 one day n go to office on cycle or public transport. I’ll go 2 my office on cycle (sic),” Kejriwal tweeted. The CM said when Rai decided to hold ‘Car-Free Day’ on the 22nd of every month, he had two doubts in his mind. “The first doubt was if people will participate in such an event in large numbers and the second one was if I would be able to ride a cycle. But both the doubts were cleared with most people taking part in the ‘Car-Free Day’ and using cycles,” Kejriwal said.