On Wednesday (1 November), Manoj Sinha, the Lieutenant Governor of Jammu and Kashmir, unveiled an electric bus service in Srinagar and introduced a fleet of 100 battery-operated vehicles acquired through the Smart City initiative.
These environmentally friendly battery-operated e-buses will operate on 15 designated routes.
"While launching the e-bus service, Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha expressed his gratitude to all those involved in this project and extended his thanks to TATA Motors. He expressed hope that the people of Srinagar will benefit from this service," remarked Lt. Governor Manoj Sinha.
Athar Aamir Khan, CEO of Srinagar Smart City Limited, explained that these e-buses were procured as part of the Smart City initiative with the goal of addressing the lack of public transportation services.
He disclosed that a total of 100 e-buses were procured for Srinagar, consisting of 75 nine-metre buses and 25 12-metre buses. These electric buses are emission-free and offer drivers full control over features such as doors.
Once these buses commence operation, they are expected to alleviate traffic congestion, reports the Economic Times.
The design of these buses closely resembles that of London buses. The plan is for these buses to remain in service for the next 12 years, with a corresponding 12-year contract signed with Tata. A comprehensive route plan has been established in this regard.
The buses come equipped with air conditioning and air curtains to maintain a comfortable temperature. Additionally, five strategically placed cameras within the bus, including the front, back, and near the driver's seat, ensure safety.
In case of emergencies, a panic button is available, connecting to a command-and-control centre for immediate assistance.
As part of the project, city authorities have formulated an integrated public transport system plan, detailing specific routes for each bus, as well as the locations of stops, halting points, depots, and charging stations.
Srinagar city has a rich and important heritage significance, but in the past years, the city had been neglected of the required infrastructure and resources to grow. The city infrastructure and governance always remained mismanaged.
Other projects aimed at revitalising the historic city include the revamping of water bodies and its surrounding areas, construction of pathways and kiosks, redevelopment of public and market spaces, development of open gymnasium, parks, multi-level parking lots, and cycling tracks.
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