Cause and Effect

On 15th April, the Delhi government took the decision to introduce the odd-even scheme for another fifteen days. Once again, private vehicles with an odd-numbered licence plate can run only on odd days and, even-numbered ones only on even days.

It appears the scheme has been reintroduced at the first available opportunity because the original odd-even scheme, introduced in January for fifteen days, was a resounding failure and did nothing to solve the problem it was introduced for, that of reducing atmospheric pollution in Delhi.

But what it did do during those fifteen days in January, as our leaders have discovered, is that it seemed to have resulted in some reduction in traffic on the roads. Quite against the run of play, it seems. Now who would have guessed that if you prohibit half the cars from coming onto the roads, the number of cars on the road will reduce.

At least not the Delhi CM, alumnus of the prestigious Indian Institute of Technology (IIT). How, then, can one blame the Delhi government for not knowing?

Displaying maturity and foresight far beyond any political mandate, Delhi’s political leadership has decided that atmospheric pollution, a raging issue just three months back, does not need to be solved any more. Till, of course, it becomes an unsolvable issue once again next winter, requiring drastic measures that don’t work. Which gets solved once again by the onset of the following summer, creating bigger problems to solve.

As is the case this year. Freed from the yoke of solving the pollution issue, as summer is now raging in Delhi, the government has reintroduced the odd-even scheme, this time to reduce traffic on the roads. Like atmospheric pollution, traffic needs to be reduced only for fifteen days. Of course, as with all good schemes, it has been reintroduced because of pressure from the public.

Quite a handy scheme this odd-even is turning out to be. First it is introduced to reduce atmospheric pollution which it does not. Now it is introduced to reduce traffic on the roads. Wonder what else it can be introduced for? For solving the issue of the plunging water table? For providing food to the poor? Poor performance of Delhi Daredevils in IPL? European refugee crisis?

One wonders if any other scheme will ever be required…

The big question everyone is asking is; what will the scheme solve this time. Last time it was introduced to solve the pollution issue and ended up reducing traffic on the roads. As this time it has been introduced for reducing traffic on the roads, it cannot be expected to reduce traffic on the roads. One wonders what it will really solve. At every corner tea-shop, in every metro coach, people are busy guessing the problem that the odd-even scheme will solve this time. Radio jockeys are having a field day running contests for people to guess the problem the odd-even scheme of April 2016 will solve.

There is really no saying what a decision of the government might end up solving.

A senior minister in the AAP government in Delhi, who had taken it upon himself to treat all women of visibly foreign looks as being of questionable character and personally led police teams to raid their homes, is preparing to start these raids once again.

“We don’t know what we might end up solving,” he looked somberly into the horizon and stated, while putting on his helmet in preparation for the raid later in the night.

In Gurgaon, or Gurugram now, always eager to copy from Delhi, transport authorities are busy breaching medians on busy roads, contrary to the once popular belief of reducing criss-crossing traffic to smoothen the flow.

Their response to enquiries from the media is, “We know it will solve something. As of now we don’t know what. But we will tell you as soon as we find out. Meanwhile, expect more central medians to be breached.”

The political will to take decisions without thought and logic is back.

“I have no idea what, but I might have solved something today,” is the new war-cry of members of the Delhi cabinet.

For more details of the odd-even scheme, go to post titled ODDities and EVENtualities.

27 thoughts on “Cause and Effect

  1. Nobody can beat this logic….it will solve something…although what that something will be is not known as of now. 😂
    Can’t take it away from them…IIT or otherwise…ummeed pe duniya kaayam hai afterall! 😀

    • Indeed! I agree. Ummeed pe duniya kayam hai. Next odd-even will be based on prime numbers. The one after on the Fibonacci series. And so on. One day we will solve a real problem 🙂

  2. At the very least this measure will teach people about the difference between odd and even numbers – then, who knows, maybe millions more people would take interest in math, get inspired to learn, go to college, get good jobs, go into research, and move the science and economy by huge leaps forward.

    • In the next version of odd-even, only people with cars with a number plate whose digits when added together, then divided by 3, added to the birthday of the driver, yield a quotient whose square root is a single digit number, will be able to drive. What was it you were saying about math…?

  3. Again, Big Government in its (mal)wisdom, passes a law that disproportionately hurts the little guy. Those of us with one car, who try to carpool and take public transportation, now can only drive half the time. Others, with two cars, who never attempted to limit their carbon footprint, still don’t need to.

    Don’t get me started.

    • With you there Jacqui! If I am the law-abiding conscientious citizen, conscious of giving more than I receive, it seems I gotta do some picking-up after the guys who are not. No fair. Taking knee-jerk actions has become a management style. Plan has become a four-letter word. Odd-even just happens to be a convenient whipping boy. I fear we are sitting on the brink of catastrophes much more serious and severe.

  4. Maybe rich people with odd names could stop eating on odd days and make food available for poor people and on the other days the other people could do the same. It might solve something even if there was some rather odd result.

  5. Mr. Kayeesawal is already preparing and planning to introduce this odd-even in governance too.

    Odd day- he will govern ( who can be more odd than Mr. K ? ) and even day- Governor will govern ( as the governor definitely knows how to get even ). Needless to say it will solve many practical problems !!

  6. I have missed some of the local jokes not being very well acquainted with the Indian political scene but you made me smile again and I want to thank you for your witty posts which force me to see Greek reality in a more lighthearted way. We also have odd-even traffic arrangements, we have some very polluted days in winter and much less in summer (people go on vacation so less cars anyways) and nothing is being solved!!!! Keep us smiling

    • Thank you! Those are very kind words. No reward greater than being able to make someone smile. Irrespective of caste, creed, nationality, human beings are alike. Political leaders even more so 🙂

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