However, they contended that several other measures in the medium term and long term, towards rapid strengthening of public transportation are needed in order to reach a stable situation and reduction in pollution levels.

According to Raj Cherubal, Director-Projects, Chennai City Project, plying of odd and even numbered vehicles every alternate day would lead to a 'dramatic' decrease in congestion during the peak pollution months.

"Double or triple your bus fleet. Increase your feeder system dramatically to connect to main trunks and Metro. But it's very easy to harp on long-term solutions but if short term measures such as this are not supported then whole point is lost," Cherubal, who has pioneered 'car-free' days in Chennai said.

He rued that no one calculates and talks about 'actual cost to taxpayer and losses' due to all the infrastructure given to private cars.

Holding it as a step in the 'right direction', India head of Institute for Transportation and Development Policy Shreya Gadepalli said that the odd-even system had been refined by cities like Bogota. Madhav Pai of EMBARQ seconded Gadepalli's argument.

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