Transporting Masses in Urban India: Policy and Fact Disconnect


Current policies on moving masses in Indian cities have failed to address the severity of the problems by neither considering rational alternatives nor optimally managing existing transportation assets and infrastructure. The right rationale requires planners to not only base their decisions on the fundamental considerations of minimising energy, cost, and emission in moving a person over a given distance and using a mix of modes, but also to track and measure these metrics objectively, for enabling the best modal mix that can be offered to the city. This policy rationale remains vague, unmeasured, and unaccountable. A course correction implies moving away from transport technology status-quo and embarking on a definitive search for the best mobility technologies for the city. Moreover, India needs to introspect, open up and adopt more accountable policies. In facilitating mobility for its masses, India can no longer afford to waste energy and cost, nor emit pollutants, at current levels, using status-quo technologies and systems.

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