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Thursday , 23 May 2024


TrafficInfraTech Expo and ParkingInfraTech Expo, presented under the banner of Smart Mobility, opened their innings in South India this September at Hitex Exhibition Centre, Hyderabad. With the theme “Smart World & New Mobility: Breaking Barriers”, the shows attracted quality visitors committing to come again next year in Mumbai in October.

TrafficInfraTech Expo, in its sixth year, and ParkingInfraTech expo, in its third year, created a landmark achievement in the quality of visitors the two shows are known for. The shows had 3000 business visitors, 125 exhibitors and lived up to the expectations of Joint Ventures, business partnerships, national and international networking of stakeholders from 25 countries, with many promising to come back for the next show in Mumbai in October 2018.

Congratulating the organisers, Virtual Info Systems, for the humongous efforts of bringing the latest national and international solutions under one roof, and the Editor-in- Chief, Mangala Chandran for bringing in eminent speakers for the various seminars, Yudhvir Singh Malik, Secretary, MoRTH said, “Such shows help in creating awareness about the latest technologies and are very important”. He expressed an interest in the creation of a docket being created of all the technologies/ solutions being presented at the shows. “It is a humongous effort. The entire team has got so many solutions together at one place. Compliments to all of you for putting it all together and bringing here. A document on the companies according to the solutions, equipment and technologies they provide will be helpful for all the infrastructure projects”, he said.

In keeping with its practice of three-days’ knowledge conferences, TrafficInfraTech magazine had organized panel discussions and keynote addresses that ran parallel to the exhibitions on all the three days.

Inaugural Address

In his Chief Guest’s address at the first day’s conference, Malik emphasized on Integrated Transport Systems and Multi-Modal Facilities and said, A meeting was held at the residence of the Minister of Road Transport and Highways, Nitin Gadkari, and it was decided to organise a meeting of the State Transport Ministers and Secretaries to expose them to the Bus Depot at Vadodara, a marvel in transport sector.

Yudhvir Singh Malik, in his address, shared an interesting anecdote. He said a Minister once asked the noted industrialist Ratan Tata, “Why do our buses not have the quality of buses like the West? And why have you not improved your buses?” Tata replied in a nonchalant manner, “Because nobody pushed us to do that till now”.

“We had a meeting of State Transport Ministers and Secretaries at the Minister’s residence recently in Vadodara to expose them to the Bus Port so that it can be emulated,” he said. He was talking about the world class airport-like bus terminal of Vadodara that was inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in 2014. Citing the Intelligent Transport Systems deployment in Varanasi and the Multi-Modal Facility coming up in Nagpur, Malik said, “We will create a few pieces which can be demonstrated to the states and emulated by them”.

Moving towards EVs

Representing NITI Aayog Anil Srivastava, in his special address on the first day, said that the world was moving towards shared and connected mobility. Driving home the point that India was the fastest growing nation in cars, he said, “There is a shift from combustion engines to zero emission vehicles. By 2040, share of electric/ zero emission vehicles will be quite high. The battery prices are going down and by 2030, battery prices will be down to 73 dollars. 85 percent of all trips in India are less than that of five kilometres. We can straight away move to electric vehicles”.

He exhorted the audience to think that given the increasing demand for electric vehicles, and hence, their batteries, it is odd that there is no Indian company in the manufacturing of these batteries! “We figure somewhere in “rest of the world” in studies and are not mentioned specifically”. Among the many action areas to be worked upon, he mentioned improving air quality in India’s high pollution cities and bringing EV mobility to India as the top two. Laying emphasis on Multiple Technology Approach, he said, “We need to take lead in Electric Vehicle Manufacturing, Battery Manufacturing, Creating Charging Points, EV Componentry and Unified Mobility Platform”. Srivastava said that we have about 2000 charging points and that is a big challenge as EVs gain momentum on Indian roads.

T Krishna Prasad, however, said that EVs have challenges too. “The only way forward is Public Transport. We cannot keep adding flyovers. I am a great fan of Public Transport but are we integrating the buses, trains, metros seamlessly?” He said the aggregators played a major role in making travel convenient for the passengers, and “if they give convenience, then we must look at ways to promote them”. Praising the shows he said, “Personally I am very happy that I came here today. I had an opportunity of meeting the captains of the industry and learnt the way they think. The opening session, of the seminar, particularly, was superb. You had the Secretary of MoRTH Y S Malik himself giving the Chief Guest’s address and the Advisor to NITI Aayog, Anil Srivastava giving the Keynote address, What else do you want? That was a fantastic opening. The industry got a very good idea about how the government is thinking. The rest of the experts from the industry gave their perspectives and we got to know and understand how they look at the entire issue. I went around the stalls and I think this is one of the best collections of technology under one roof. I wish this will continue. It has got a great value because we need to talk more and more about mobility, solutions for mobility, and integrated & intelligent solutions for mobility. We need to talk a lot more about safety and security, because we are losing 1,50,000 human lives and three per cent GDP. Only when such exhibitions take place at such a grand scale do we discuss serious things. The kind of technology displayed here is very, very useful and I hope various governmental agencies and the industry will adopt these technologies to make our human lives more safe when we are on the move, and our travel more comfortable”.

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