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Day 45 – Q 4.What are some of the smart and innovative solutions being carried out in India to make city transport better and more efficient? What can be learnt from these solutions? Discuss.

4. What are some of the smart and innovative solutions being carried out in India to make city transport better and more efficient? What can be learnt from these solutions? Discuss.  

शहर परिवहन को बेहतर और अधिक कुशल बनाने के लिए भारत में किए गए कुछ स्मार्ट और अभिनव समाधान क्या हैं? इन समाधानों से क्या सीखा जा सकता है? चर्चा करें।


Currently, India’s nearly 30% population lives in urban areas and it is expected to rise upto 50% by 2050. Being a developing country with a huge population pressure India is facing many challenges and one of them is public transport.


Smart and innovative solutions

China has about six buses for 1,000 people while India has only four buses per 10,000 people.

Some of the smart and innovative solutions given by government are  

  • Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission JNNURM, 2005:JNNURM was launched in 2005 and closed in 2014 (now succeeded by Atal AMRUT Mission). It attempted to improve the public transport system in larger cities through funding of public transport buses, development of comprehensive city mobility plans and supporting city transport infrastructure projects.
  • National Urban Transport Policy, 2006: The policy envisages safe, affordable, quick, comfortable, reliable and sustainable urban transport through establishment of quality focused multi-modal public transport systems.
  • Green Urban Transport Scheme, 2016:. The scheme aims to improve non-motorised transport infrastructure such as dedicated lanes for cycling, pedestrians, increasing access to public transport, use of clean technologies and adoption of intelligent transport systems (ITS).
  • Mass Rapid Transit/ Transport Systems (MRTS): The metro rail has come up as a favoured alternative of mass transport in Indian cities. In 2017, the government introduced new Metro Policy which aims to improve collaborations, standardising norms, financing and creating a procurement mechanism so that the projects can be implemented effectively.
  • Bus Rapid Transport System (BRTS): BRTS segregates the movement of buses from all other transport modes, and introduces other changes in the road infrastructure that are associated with safety. BRTS is an important component of AMRUT (Atal Mission for Rejuvenation and Urban Transformation)
  • National Transit Oriented Development Policy, 2017: The policy framework aims to promote living close to mass urban transit corridors like the Metros, monorail and bus rapid transit (BRT) corridors.
  • Sustainable Urban Transport Project (SUTP): The project in partnership with Ministry of Urban Development and UNDP aims to promote environmentally sustainable urban transport in India.
  • Personal Rapid Transit System (PRT): It is a transport mode combining small automated vehicles, known as pods, operating on a network of specially built guideways. In 2017, the National Highway Authority of India (NHAI) had called the expression of interest (EOI) for launching India’s first driverless pod taxi systems on a 70 km stretch from Dhaula Kuan in Delhi to Manesar in Haryana
  • National Public Bicycle Scheme (NPBS): In 2011, NPBS was launched to build capacity for the implementation and operation of cycle sharing systems across the country. The first public bicycle sharing (PBS) initiative — Trin Trin was launched in Mysuru.
  • Promotion of Electric Vehicles: Indian Government plans to have an all-electric fleet of vehicles by 2030. For promotion of electric vehicles FAME (Faster Adoption and Manufacturing of (hybrid &) Electric vehicles. Under FAME, the Centre subsidizes the cost of electric buses and has sanctioned 390 buses in 11 cities (as of April 2018).
  • Ahmedabad BRTS Corridor: Features that stand out is- For the first three months, the Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation (AMC) ran BRTS free and then made design changes based on commuter feedback, It provides affordable Smart cards for commuters.
  • Integrated Transportation Management System (IMTS) which includes Advanced Vehicle Tracking System (AVLS), Fleet Management System (FMS), Automatic Fare Collection System (AFCS), Passenger Information System (PIS), Passenger announcement (PA), and Vehicle Scheduling and Dispatching (VSD)
  • CNG Buses
  • Safe and secure BRT bus stops with a standard attractive form for presenting passengers information such as signages, route details and graphics

Learnings and way forward:

  • Taking an integrated view of comprehensive mobility for the city/metropolitan areas and/or national/regional geographies.
  • Viewing the entire eco-system (and not only the transit system) as a ‘black-box’ to ascertain overall viability and act as a financial intermediary between different commercial models.
  • Providing interoperability between transport modes in terms of quality, schedule alignment and integrated ticketing.
  • Making the public transport system amenable to technological innovations that can enhance user experience and make transport safe and efficient.
  • Facilitate the inter-connect between different service providers and modes.
  • Specifying standards and deliverables on each parameter related to customer experience for any/all service providers and monitoring the same.
  • Providing a mechanism for grievance redressal for both customers and service providers with options for modifying, in light of the changing business conditions.
  • Promoting research, development and innovation.


NITI Aayog Recommendations calls for a 3C Framework (Clean, Convenient and Congestion free) for transforming mobility in India. To achieve this, it lays down the following action-agenda: a. Connect Bharat

  1. Optimize travel footprint
  2. Promote seamless public transport
  3. Adopting green modes and technologies.
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