132-Seater Bus, Food And Hostesses: Nitin Gadkari’s Pilot Project For Nagpur

132-seater bus | Nagpur pilot project | Nitin Gadkari: Pollution has become a significant issue in India, and the government is focusing on promoting non-polluting energy sources for personal and public transportation. Nitin Gadkari, the Road Transport and Highways Minister, recently discussed an innovative pilot project in Nagpur during the NDTV Infrashakti Awards. This project features a 132-seater bus with airplane-like seating and a “bus hostess,” running on non-polluting energy sources and being cheaper than regular diesel buses. The government aims for India to become a net energy exporter instead of an importer.

The Challenge of Pollution in India

Air Pollution: A Pressing Concern

Air pollution is a critical problem in India, especially in cities like Delhi. The harmful effects on health and the environment necessitate immediate action. The government is looking for solutions that are import-substitute, cost-effective, pollution-free, and indigenous.

Water and Sound Pollution

Water and sound pollution are also significant issues that need addressing. Innovative solutions are required to combat these problems effectively.

Nitin Gadkari Vision for Sustainable Transportation

Electric Vehicles and Ethanol Pumps

The government is promoting electric vehicles as a clean alternative to traditional fuel vehicles. Indian Oil is installing 300 ethanol pumps, and automobile companies are introducing flex-fuel vehicles. Ethanol, being cheaper and cleaner than petrol, is a promising alternative.

Cost Reduction in Public Transportation

Reducing the cost of public transportation is another focus. Diesel buses are expensive to run, costing ₹115 per km, while AC electric buses cost ₹41 per km and non-AC buses cost ₹37 per km with subsidies. Even without subsidies, electric buses will still be more economical, potentially lowering ticket prices by 15-20%.

The 132-Seater Bus Project in Nagpur

Airplane-like Seating and Bus Hostesses

The pilot project in Nagpur involves a 132-seater bus with features similar to an airplane. Comfortable seating, air-conditioning, and space for laptops are part of the design. Additionally, bus hostesses will provide fruits, packed food, and beverages to passengers.

Non-Polluting Energy Sources

The bus will run on non-polluting energy sources, making it environmentally friendly. The cost to run the bus is estimated at ₹35-40 per km, significantly lower than diesel buses. Using solar power could further reduce costs.

Charging Efficiency

The bus will travel 49 km on the ring road, halting at bus stops every 40 km to recharge in just 40 seconds. This efficient charging process ensures minimal downtime.

Innovative Uses of Ethanol

Construction Equipment and Tractors

JCB has developed construction equipment using 50% ethanol and 50% CNG. Tractor manufacturers are also working on machines running on ethanol, methanol, and CNG. These innovations will help reduce pollution and increase farmers’ income.

Ethanol from Stubble

A project by Indian Oil is producing 1 lakh litres of ethanol from stubble, nearly complete and expected to yield 76,000 tonnes of bio aviation fuel. This initiative will also produce bio bitumen.

Reducing Waste and Generating Energy

Ghazipur Landfill and Contaminated Water Purification

The ministry has successfully reduced the height of the Ghazipur landfill in Delhi by seven metres and achieved similar results in Ahmedabad. Contaminated water from sewage is being purified for use in power generation.

Organic Waste for Biofuels

Organic waste can be converted into bio CNG, bio LNG, or hydrogen, providing alternative clean energy sources.

Future Innovations in Transportation

Drones and Ropeways

Drones and ropeways are being explored as part of the ministry’s focus on innovative transportation solutions.

Funicular Railways

Funicular railways, which are rope-propelled trains used on steep cliffs, are being considered for hilly regions like Uttarakhand, Himachal, and Ladakh to reduce pollution and improve transportation.

GPS-Based Tolling System

Implementation within Three Months

The government will implement a GPS-based tolling system on 5,000 km of roads within three months. This system ensures drivers only pay for the distance traveled, with toll amounts deducted directly from bank accounts, eliminating the need to stop at toll booths.

Promoting a Green Revolution in Agriculture

Investor Interest and Financial Stability

Nitin Gadkari aims for a “green revolution” in agriculture, with ample funds and investor interest due to the ministry’s lucrative projects.

Rupee-Based Financing

Gadkari emphasizes rupee-based financing for foreign investors, avoiding risks associated with currency fluctuations.

Nitin Gadkari’s pilot project for a 132-seater bus in Nagpur represents a significant step towards sustainable and cost-effective public transportation. By focusing on non-polluting energy sources, efficient designs, and innovative technologies, the government aims to address pollution and reduce transportation costs. This project, along with other initiatives, marks a promising move towards a cleaner, greener future for India.

  1. What is the main goal of the 132-seater bus project in Nagpur? The main goal is to provide a cost-effective, non-polluting transportation solution with airplane-like seating and amenities.
  2. How will the bus be powered? The bus will run on non-polluting energy sources, potentially including solar power.
  3. What are the benefits of using ethanol as a fuel? Ethanol is cheaper, cleaner, and helps reduce pollution, with the added benefit of increasing farmers’ income.
  4. What is GPS-based tolling, and how will it work? GPS-based tolling charges drivers based on the distance traveled, with amounts deducted directly from bank accounts.
  5. How will the bus project contribute to reducing pollution? By using non-polluting energy sources and reducing reliance on diesel, the project will significantly lower emissions.

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