The Delhi Disaster Management Authority (DDMA) on Friday allowed standing passengers in Metro trains and buses to augment the carrying capacity of the public transport systems to let more people use them instead of private vehicles in view of the prevailing air pollution. In order, the DDMA said 30 standing passengers will be allowed in each Metro train coach. In Delhi Transport Corporation (DTC) and Cluster buses, the maximum number of passengers allowed to travel in a standing position will be 50 percent of the seating capacity.
So far, Metro trains and buses in Delhi were allowed to run only with full seating capacity to reduce crowding to check the spread of COVID-19. Delhi's air quality remained in the "very poor" category on Saturday as the Air Quality Index (AQI) in the city was recorded at 374, according to the Central Pollution Control Board.
In view of the prevailing air pollution situation in NCT of Delhi, it has been felt to augment the carrying capacity of the public transport system (buses/Delhi Metro) so as to minimise the use of private vehicles in order to improve the ambient air quality of the city, the DDMA order stated. "Transportation by Delhi Metro will be allowed with 100 percent seating capacity of the coach along with up to 30 standing passengers in a coach in Delhi Metro.
"Transportation by DTC as well as Cluster buses will be permitted with 100 percent seating capacity of the buses along with standing passengers up to 50 percent of the seating capacity of a bus," it said. Earlier this week, the transport department had sent a proposal to the DDMA seeking its permission for standing passengers in public transport.