Mass rapid transportation technologies such as hyperloop, metrino and pod taxis could soon be a reality in India after Niti Aayog cleared half-a-dozen proposals of the transport ministry exploring options to improve public transport.
Following the go-ahead, the transport ministry has formed a six member committee, headed by a former top official of Railways, to study safety parameters associated with these technologies and global practices.
“These new technologies are path breaking and can alter the way of intercity travel in the country. Since we don’t have any such thing in India, we need to know the global safety standards and ensure that these technology companies are following it,” a senior transport ministry official said. “Even for the pilot project, passenger safety is paramount,” the transport ministry official added.
The new technologies are being explored as current public transportation is unable to resolve the increasing traffic crisis in the country. Besides, some of them are more cost effective than the existing ones.
Once these safety parameters are tried and tested and the pilot run is successful, some of them including metrino, could be up for running by next year’s end.
Adopt New Technologies
It does make sense to adopt new technology for urban transportation, especially when the new networks are billed to be so much more energy efficient and innovative. However, it is imperative that we adopt the precautionary principle and conduct extensive field trials. We do need to thoroughly probe the safety and other features of the new technology on offer that is expected to vastly improve speeds and efficiency.
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