Nearly nine lakh new vehicles were registered and added to Delhi roads in the year 2015-16, leading to an increased level of pollution despite the government's Odd-Even scheme and other exhortations by Pollution Control Board (PCB) and National Green Tribunal (NGT). The total numbers of registered vehicles are 97.04 lakh in 2015-16 while 88.27 lakh vehicles were registered in 2014-15.
In 2015-16, the number of vehicles have increased by 8.77 lakh from 2014-15. The figures are disclosed by Delhi Statistical Hand Book. New cars and gypsies were increased by 1.96 lakh adding up to a total of 29.86 lakh such vehicles on roads in 2015-16. In 2014-15, figures were 27.90 lakh. Besides four-wheelers, two-wheelers were increased by 4.22 lakh in 2015-16 with total figures leading to 61.06 lakh.
In 2014-15, total figures were 56.81 lakh. The number of registered auto rickshaws increased by 1.16 lakh, adding to the total number of 1.98 lakh in 2015-16. The figure for auto rickshaws was 81,000 in 2014-15. Around 11,000 taxis got registered in the year 2015-16, the total number of taxis running on Delhi roads are 91,000.
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In 2014-15, there were 79,000 taxis on Delhi roads. In the same year, total numbers of private and government running buses were 32,540. In 2015-16, 11,183 buses were added to the total count, which is 43,723. The number of goods vehicles registered in 2014-15 was 1.61 lakh. An increase of 1.19 lakh registered goods vehicles were seen in the year 2015-16. The total number of goods vehicles are 2.81 lakh so far. Anumita Roychowdhury, of the Centre for Science and Environment told MAILTODAY, "If we look at this figure (8-9 lakh), you would see that the majority or dominant segment is cars and two-wheelers." "This clearly shows that it's a growing and uncontrolled dependence on personal vehicles because Delhi has failed to scale up its public transport system," she said.
"However, what is more worrying is the fact that when we did a survey at the border of Delhi last year, we found that the number of cars that entered Delhi daily from the NCR region is actually equal to or more than the total number of cars registered in the Capital annually." "So it's a double whammy for the city. This car congestion that is becoming explosive in the city will negate all your pollution control efforts and increase toxic exposures. So we need immediate interventions to scale up public transport and restraint use of personal vehicle. We should encourage walking and cycling too," added Chowdhary.
"Vehicles are more lethal to human lungs than say power plant emissions as they are exactly at nose level and impact directly." To control dangerously high levels of pollution, the Supreme Court had banned the registration of new diesel-guzzling luxury cars and SUVs with engine capacity of over 2000 cc on on December 16, 2015, The ban was later uplifted on August 12, 2016 in Delhi and the national capital region (NCR) on payment of 1% ex-showroom cost as environment tax.
In 2016, the apex court also warned the private taxi operators in NCR to switch to CNG from diesel. To bring down the city's air pollution Delhi High Court had directed the state and Centre governments to come up with broader action plans.