Gaurav Vivek Bhatnagar

NEW DELHI: The first of 525 new low-floor eco-friendly CNG buses for which an order has been placed by the Delhi Transport Corporation was received by Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit at Hauz Khas bus terminal here on Monday. All these buses are expected to arrive and become operational by October-end.

Ms. Dikshit, who also inaugurated the Strategic Business Unit (SBU) Building, said while it is difficult to achieve the target of doubling of the fleet size of DTC by the end of March 2009, the efforts made by DTC in placing the order for 525 new low-floor CNG buses, of which 25 will be air-conditioned, would substantially help in increasing the fleet size that stands at 3,100 CNG buses at present. In order to ensure that DTC has 6,000 buses soon, she said, the Expenditure Finance Committee of the Government had already approved procurement of another 4,500 buses by 2009-10.The Chief Minister said another 200 white buses would also be purchased for the Commonwealth Games-2010.

She expressed the hope that DTC would ultimately emerge as a modern, commuter-friendly bus service provider in Delhi.

She also urged the DTC employees to be sensitive to the needs of the commuters and take special care of the aged, disabled and school children.Ms. Dikshit also instructed the Chairman and Managing Director of DTC, Anshu Prakash, to identify routes where the new buses would ply so that maximum benefit could be drawn from them. She also urged the vehicle manufacturers to adhere to the committed time schedule so that the entire supply order is completed by July next yyear.

Transport Minister Haroon Yusuf said the SBU would help and oversee the procurement and induction of new and modern buses in the DTC fleet.