Next phase of odd-even only in winter: Kejriwal

The next phase of implementation of the controversial odd-even scheme in the capital is likely to happen only in the winter season this year, says Delhi Chief minister Arvind Kejriwal.

According to him, this is on account of the fact that there is an urgent need to improve public transport. “So once that is in place within a year, the odd-even scheme will be a much bigger success," he said.

Government sources said a big hurdle faced during odd-even II was the weather. Hence, the scheme wasn't likely to return during summer. "Air pollution, for which odd-even was started, is not a problem during the monsoon. So, one can expect the next phase only in the winter, when pollution reaches scary levels and public support for the scheme is high," said an official.

For odd-even II, the CM thanked the people of Delhi, who had "followed rules better than Americans". He also thanked the DTC, auto and taxi drivers, civil defence volunteers, the transport department and traffic police for making the scheme a "success".

Kejriwal said the biggest impact of odd-even was on congestion. He also accused the opposition and sections of the media of trying to sabotage the initiative.

The chief minister also blamed taxi aggregators for trying to take advantage of the situation. "They raised their fares by up to seven times. I called one company and asked why it was doing this and it said it was following the same model in 400 cities across the world. I told them that this would not apply in Delhi. After we impounded 150 cabs the next day, the companies rolled back the surge pricing," he claimed.