Delhi’s odd-even scheme

Delhi’s odd-even scheme


  • As Delhi’s air quality continues to be in the “severe” category, the state government has decided to reintroduce the odd-even scheme from November 13-20.

What is the odd-even scheme?

  • In the odd-even scheme, vehicles whose registration number ends on even digits are allowed to ply on even dates like 0, 2, 4, 6, 8, 10 and so on.

  • Similarly, vehicles having their registration numbers ending on odd digits, are allowed to ply on odd dates such as 1, 3, 5, 7, 9 and so on.
  • Only odd-numbered cars were allowed on the roads between 8 am and 8 pm on odd days, whereas even-numbered cars were allowed in the same time on even days.
  • The people who violated the rule were fined Rs 2,000. Special arrangements like extra buses, a bike taxi service and increase in the metro frequency were made to make the plan successful.
  • In the previous phases of the scheme, two-wheelers, women-only vehicles, CNG, hybrid and electric vehicles, emergency vehicles and VIPs were exempted from it.
  • Apart from the VIPs, politicians, Supreme Court judges and defence vehicles, single women drivers and women drivers with children below the age of 12 were also exempted.
  • The ‘odd-even’ was first introduced in 2016 by the AAP government to control vehicular pollution and bring down increasing particulate matter levels.
  • Under it, private vehicles with registration plates ending in odd numbers could ply on odd dates, and even numbers on even dates.

Has the odd-even scheme worked

  • According to a study done by Delhi Technological University published in 2016, when the scheme was implemented for a roughly two-week period, concentration of PM 2.5 and PM 1 saw a drop.
  • Studies have also shown that on an average, there was a reduction in PM 2.5 of 5.73 per cent and 4.70 per cent in PM 1 levels.
  • The scheme had also landed Kejriwal among Fortune Magazine’s 50 greatest leaders in 2016 for his efforts to curb pollution in the national capital.

Syllabus: Prelims + Mains; GS III – Environment