At least 27,000 diesel-run taxis will go off Delhi’s roads from Sunday, a day after the Supreme Court refused to give them time beyond the April 30 deadline to convert to CNG. A total of 60,000 taxis are registered in the Capital, and 2,000 of them switched to the greener fuel over the past two months, PTI reported.
While the court’s order does not apply to taxis with all-India permits, most of the registered taxis in Delhi ply locally. Delhi Transport Minister Gopal Rai has asked the transport department to take action against any local diesel taxis seen on the roads on Sunday. Taxis with all-India permits have to cover a distance of 200 kilometres, he said, and this will be verified through spot-checks.
Thousands of commuters could be affected by the development as many diesel taxis take people across the large distances in and around Delhi – including parts of Noida, Gurgaon and Ghaziabad. The Supreme Court on Saturday had dismissed a plea to shift the April 30 deadline saying, “We can't keep extending the time. We are not extending it now and not going to make any exceptions. There is technology available, you convert.” The previous deadline was March 31.