|Chief minister Tarun Gogoi and Jorhat deputy commissioner Solanki Vishal Vashant in Jorhat on Tuesday. Picture by UB Photos
Jorhat, Oct. 1: Assam chief minister Tarun Gogoi today launched a scheme to phase out over 10-year-old three-wheeler public transport vehicles in Jorhat district and replace them with cleaner Bharat Stage-III four-wheeler vehicles.
The scheme, named Jorhat Pride, a first-of-its-kind in the Northeast, has been devised by the district administration in association with Tata Motors and State Bank of India.
Gogoi lauded the district administration for the novel scheme. He said he would ask other districts to follow suit.
Jorhat deputy commissioner Solanki Vishal Vashant told The Telegraph that the scheme was prepared after discussing with the three-wheeler owners’ association.
Under the scheme, the owner of a public transport vehicle will have to apply to the Tata Motors dealer here and after inspecting the vehicle the company will scrap it and pay Rs 20,000 to the owner. The owner without applying for a new permit could buy a new Tata Magic four-wheeler from the dealer by taking a loan from SBI or Tata Motors Finance. Tata Motors will also provide a uniform and identity cards to the driver and provide behavioural training.
The new vehicles will have pictures of important and historical places of Jorhat and Jorhat Pride written on it. Solanki said a GPS device would be fitted later.
Ankit Gupta, Tata Motors territorial sales manager, said the owners would also get free accidental insurance. Gupta, who is based in Guwahati, said about 50 applications have been received so far and 15 have been cleared.
Gogoi, while taking a dig at his opponents over the issue of development, said after the Congress came to power in Assam in 2001, the increase in number of vehicles was an indicator of the development and improvement in the economy of the state.
Later, Gogoi laid the foundation stone of Jorhat Municipal Board’s Rs 10.51 crore multi-storied car parking and community hall building at the old public bus stand here. The project funded under Non-Lapsable Central Pool of Resources and first in Upper Assam, will be have a market on the ground floor and parking for over 150 cars in the first and second floors, with a community hall on the third floor.
PWD and urban development minister Ajanta Neog said the construction work has been entrusted to Engineers’ Guild and is expected to be complete within 20 months.
Former DoNER minister and Jorhat MP B.K. Handique, MLA Rana Goswami, municipal board chairman Prasanta Bora, among others, attended the function.