New Delhi: With an aim to increase the availability of cheap and affordable mode of transport for the public, the Delhi government will introduce a new programme — City Taxi Scheme 2015 — in the national capital, Transport Minister Gopal Rai said on Monday.
“For the first two km, the cabs will charge Rs.25, after that it will be Rs.10 per km. This will be a cheaper mode of transport as the tariff will almost be equal to autorickshaw fare,” Rai said.
“The state transport authority in a meeting today (Monday) passed the City Taxi Scheme 2015 for better transport availability in the capital,” he said, adding that a notification in this regard will be issued soon.
“This taxi scheme will be an amalgamation of the Radio Taxi Scheme 2006 and the Economy Taxi Scheme 2010. Vehicles of capacity 600 cc (small cars like Nano and Rewa) onwards will be covered under the new scheme,” he said.
Earlier, vehicles above 750 cc capacity were allowed to ply as taxis on city roads.
He said registrations would be made under individual and group category as well as aggregators.
For registration under individual category, one has to shell out Rs.5,000, while that for the group category will be Rs.25,000.
In the group category, the minimum fleet required is 200 and the maximum 2,500.
Taxis plying under this scheme would be of white colour with provisions of advertisements on both sides.
Vehicles will have LCD display on top in green and red colour for availability and occupied category, respectively, he said.
“Panic button and hooter will be mandatory in the vehicles. Bill will be generated as per rates notified by the government,” the minister said.
The government would also launch a rented motorcycle scheme.
“Licenses will be issued for motorcycles which can be hired for use by individuals and tourists. These will be commercially registered and given contract carriage permit. Licensees should have minimum number of five motorcycles with office space of 150 square feet,” Rai added.
A report in the Wall Street Journal predicts that India’s combined workforce will increase by 12 million each month, making it the youngest working population in the world by 2022.
Sixty-five per cent of India’s population already falls in the working-age bracket, which means that a considerably large group of commuters from across the country travel long distances using personal vehicles and public transport. In doing so, they often battle with ill-maintained roads and insurmountably heavy traffic. A more specific viewpoint, focusing on commuters using company-sponsored cab services, reveals that these professionals spend hours traveling to and from work, with ill-planned routes and delayed pick-ups hampering their health and workplace productivity.
Therefore, several path-breaking companies are leveraging the potential of modern-day technologies to bridge the existing gaps in India’s transport sector.
This is where the role of Internet of Things (IoT) and predictive analytics in ride-sharing comes in. The objective of every ride-sharing start-up is to find a solution to optimize travel. They use IoT and Artificial Intelligence (AI) to identify demand and supply patterns for transportation within the city, based on historical data. The final objective of commute-focused start-ups is to understand how the traffic from commercial hubs interacts with the rest of the city and identify a way to alleviate the hassle of ride-sharing within that context.
The Indian transportation industry can leverage predictive analysis and data mining to draw insights and patterns from the vast pool of big data pertaining to transport and traffic conditions in particular areas. Using these patterns, systems powered by AI can plot the fastest routes for commuters, factoring in multiple pick-ups and drops on the way. Such systems rely upon AI to create routes for corporate commutes and club the employees who plan to commute at similar times, thus ensuring that they take the shortest route possible.
Predictive analysis tools can also alert drivers and passengers about impending bottlenecks and congestion. Such systems will reduce travel time for employees, while helping corporates save the large sums of money they spend on organising company-sponsored commutes.
Technological intervention can also bring about safety and security as far as public transport and employee commute services are concerned.
Corporates with 24-hour rotational shifts are obliged to provide cab services to their employees to ensure their safety. Connected services such as transport automation systems, driven by AI and IoT, can ensure that employees travel safely by collecting and storing relevant data about drivers, including their background verification information and prior criminal records. Additionally, through robust mobile applications, passengers can provide feedback pertaining to their experience with their drivers at the end of each trip. Advanced systems that use mobile phone sensors can also identify instances of rash driving.
Beyond the workforce commute, predictive analysis can be applied to a holistic urban mobility scenario. It can improve public transport by forecasting weather conditions, determining arrival times of buses, and predicting the number of drivers travelling each day.
Further, advanced analytics will be able to provide data regarding the impact of road maintenance, signal failures, accidents, and vehicle breakdowns on the overall traffic conditions, in addition to circumnavigating mobility bottlenecks by mapping the shortest routes in real-time. This will help people in reaching their destinations as quickly as possible.
The future of transportation in India, if it continues along the technologically-enlightened path that it has embarked upon, could be smoother and less chaotic in the near future. On the back of rapid technological advancement, the transport sector has the potential to transform itself into a well-oiled machine. Commuters and travelers are advised to just sit back, fasten their seat belts, and enjoy the ride. (IANS)