Chennai Buzz: Vehicle scrapping to impact MTC? | Trains open for students | Phase I Metro ready to go…and more

Weekly update on happenings across the city.

MTC to be impacted by scrapping policy?

The Central government has announced its old vehicle scrappage policy, according to which commercial vehicles that are over eight years should clear a fitness test and pay a green tax which is likely to be 10% to 25% of the road tax. This policy is applicable to government vehicles only.

The state-owned Metropolitan Transport Corporation (MTC) owns 3,100 buses of which one-third are over eight years old and have crossed the 10-lakh kilometre mark. It is stated that some of the old buses are not road-worthy as they meet with accidents frequently.

The transport corporation, however, says it can bear the expenses levied in the new policy on its old buses. According to an official, the new buses need not require repairs as they come fixed with Bharat Stage IV engines and can easily pass the fitness test.

Source: The Times of India 

Read more: Does Chennai have enough buses for its commuters?

College students can travel in workmen special train

In the latest revision of norms for travel, the Southern Railway has allowed college students to board the workmen special suburban trains from February 15th without any restrictions. 

Tickets will be issued to students upon producing their college identity cards and railway officials will also conduct random checks to ascertain the veracity of the identity cards. 

Source: The Hindu

Corporation to evict homeless from George Town

In a bid to initiate the flood mitigation project, the Greater Chennai Corporation plans to relocate 105 homeless families from George Town to Perumbakkam. The homeless families, who have set-up huts on the roads, have encroached on a major drain which is the key reason behind the flooding of several areas in George Town. Due to the encroachment, the civic body has been unable to work on the drains. 

The homeless citizens have requested the civic body to allocate them houses in the TNSCB flats in Pulianthope and Moolakothalam as moving to Perumbakkam will hamper their livelihood.

Source: The Hindu

Read more: PM Modi just promised Perumbakkam 1000+ new houses. Who will solve the woes of the existing ones?

NGO alleges malpractices behind pushcart allocation

Non-governmental organisation Arappor Iyakkam has alleged malpractices in the tender allocation for procurement of 900 pushcarts for Marina beach vendors. 

Vendors along Marina beach see their livelihood under threat due to the recent smart pushcarts scheme. Pic: Smrithi Suresh

The NGO alleged that the tender conditions were modified to award it to a company owned by an AIADMK office-bearer. Countering the allegation, the civic body stated that it complied by the rules and regulation set by the Madras High Court and Additional Advocate General (AAG). 

The civic body retendered the exercise based on the directions given by the Madras High Court as the shortlisted firms were ineligible. 

Source: The Times of India

Read more: Plan for smart pushcarts on Marina leaves hundreds staring at uncertain future

Metro Phase 1 extension to be inaugurated

The 9-km Washermenpet-Wimco Nagar line under Chennai Metro Rail’s Phase I extension project will be inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on February 14th. The Commissioner of Metro Rail Safety has issued the approval certificate for operations for this stretch. The line was constructed at a cost of Rs 3,770 crore.

The team from CMRS inspected safety and passenger facilities to ensure that it is fit for commuting. 

In another development, the Chennai Metro Rail Limited (CMRL) has increased the frequency of trains during peak hours. Beginning from February 12th, trains will be available every 5 minutes during peak hours and 10 minutes during non-peak hours. 

Source: The Hindu | The Times of India

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[Compiled by Bhavani Prabhakar]

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