Former Delhi chief minister Sheila Dikshit said recently that policy alone cannot counter the pollution crisis in the city and a coordination of efforts among all agencies is needed to implement the decisions of the government.
Pointing out that implementation was just as important as the policies themselves Dikshit said, “Unfortunately Kejriwal does not get along with either the police or the Lieutenant Governor and that is where implementation is lagging.” Dikshit said that if such an alarm had risen in her time, “we would have seen to it that the police regulated traffic better.”
Commenting on the Kejriwal government’s even/odd car policy which begins January 1, Dikshit said the policy was welcome but not well thought out. “It is something that should be tried and if it works, nothing like it. But our public transport system is not ready to deal with this kind of pressure.” She said Delhi Metro and buses of Delhi were already under pressure and taking cars off roads will bring them under further stress.
Apart from government agencies, Dikshit said the Kejriwal government must also speak to states around Delhi as not all pollution is caused by cars. “I am told that a lot of pollution in the city is because of construction and crop burning in neighbouring states. These states have to be spoken to,” she said.
Dikshit said that environmental concerns were raised during her time as CM as well but the government took effective steps early on to counter them. “These issues were raised in our time as well but we switched to CNG and we constructed the Metro. We also coordinated with the traffic police to avoid traffic snarls which add significantly to pollution levels in Delhi,” she said.
Dikshit also claimed that Delhi is greener today because of the efforts of the Congress government at the right time.