No brakes on rising number of vehicles
The Dehradun Regional Transport Office registered
7,600 cars during 2007-08. The number has
already reached 4,000 this year
Jotirmay Thapliyal
Tribune News Service

Dehradun, November 7
Already bursting at the seams due to rising traffic, Dehradun roads are in for more trouble if one goes by the number of cars being added to the city’s vehicular population each year.

During 2007-08, 7,600 cars were registered with the Dehradun Regional Transport Office (RTO). The number has already reached 4,000 in the current financial year.

Going by the data available with the RTO, there has been a steady rise in the number of cars being registered in Dehradun during the past one decade. As many 2,221 cars were registered in 2000-01.

This number increased to 2,199 during 2001-02, 2,541 in 2002-03, 3,581 in 2003-04, 4,272 in 2004-05, 5,007 in 2005-06, 4,346 in 2006-07 and 7,600 during 2007-08. Other four-wheelers like jeeps too have witnessed a steady rise.

While 69 registrations took place in 2000-01, 18 jeeps were registered 2001-02, 194 in 2002-03, 64 in 2003-04, 111jeeps in 2004-05, 136 in 2005-06, 68 in 2006-07 and 60 during 2007-08. For two-wheelers like scooters and motorcycles, the numbers have also risen.

As many as 10,433 such vehicles were registered in 2000-01, 12,140 during 2001-02, 14,084 in 2002-03, 15,263 in 2003-04, 17,452 in 2004-05, 19,276 in 2005-06, 22,286 in 2006-07 and 20,913 were registered with during 2007-08.

The overall number of vehicles, including bigger ones like buses and tractors, registered this year has been 31,997.

Says Sandeep, who runs Shri Om Motors near Clock Tower, “People in Dehradun prefer to buy small cars than bigger ones as traffic congestion here is increasing by the day.” Showrooms for all categories of cars have mushroomed in the city.

However, this also means a lot of problems for the administration. Dehradun district magistrate Amit Negi admits that managing traffic in the city is a big challenge before the district authorities.

He said the need of the hour is to chalk out a comprehensive trategy to ensure smooth flow of traffic.



Demand for used cars surges
Raju William
Tribune News Service

Dehradun, November 6
Even as auto financing has become more discreet due to the credit crunch, consumers are showing a distinct preference for used cars.

So, despite economic slowdown taking a toll on auto sales, the used cars segment in Uttarakhand has swung upwardly by around 50 per cent till the end of second quarter of this fiscal.

The swing is reported at Rohan Motors and DD Motors, the two licensed users of Maruti True Value, having 40 per cent share of the used cars’ market in the state capital. The three private dealers have reported steady sales accounting for 10-15 car deals a month; the numbers of these cars changing hands in the rest of customer to customer can only be a guess in the estimated used car market of 150-175 units a month in Dehradun, which practically accounts for the whole state. In fact, brand Maruti is the market leader in the state in this segment.

This March, Rohan Motors, a licensed user of Maruti True Value in Dehradun had sold just 29 cars followed by 32 in April. But as per its senior manager Vineet Barthwal, they sold 65 used cars in October.

And the trend is likely to continue on the strength of quality assurance factor, as a customer looks for greater value for his money these days.

At Maruti True Value, the customer gets one-year warranty and three free services of the vehicle as in the case of a new car. Moreover, financing is easier vis-à-vis private dealers due to its customers’ credibility in the eyes of banking and non-banking financial institutions.

The trend is encouraging but it could have been more so if the credit situation were better, said Pankaj Tyagi of Auto World, a private dealer selling 15-20 cars a month. The slowdown is helping this segment as more people are coming to buy second hand cars due to low price factor.

Small car models of Alto and Maruti 800 enjoy almost 50 per cent of the total used car sale. Given the scope of increase in sales, auto major Mahindra & Mahindra also set up shop to sell used cars of all brands in Dehradun last month.

To attract more customers, Rohan Motors is soon going to provide completely new matching interiors in every Maruti 800 to give it the used car a look of a new one, added Barthwal.



More for the adventurous
Spread over an area of 65 bighas near Rishikesh,
a new company is expected to provide
something more than river rafting
Vishal Thakur

Dehradun, November 7
With the launch of another adventure sports company in Rishikesh, the state has added one more feather to its cap insofar as offbeat sports are concerned.

Spread in an area of 65 bighas near Rishikesh, the company named ‘Treks n rapids’ is expected to hold a plethora of adventure sports activity in the times to come. Says the director of the company, Pranav Kukreti: “The state has immense scope for adventure sports. Therefore, we decided to create a company that would organise all the adventure sports under one head. Till now, companies here have just taken to river rafting.”

Kukreti has decided to introduce rock-climbing, bungee jumping, parasailing, zorbing and mountain biking at the initial stage. “We will be charging very nominal amount for these events, which will range from Rs 500 to Rs 5000. Tourists who are visiting the state can now consider extending their holidays and enjoy sports which were not available here earlier,” he adds.

He was also optimistic that the introduction of adventure sports would increase the employment potential of youths in the state. He said efforts should be made to make people self-dependent, as was the case in France.

“Only thing needed is promotion from the government side. River rafting is a sport that could also be enjoyed in winters. There is a misconception that it is a summer sport only,” he says.

The company, founded in 2002, is the brainchild of the alumni of Harvard Business School and recognised by the Confederation of India Industry (CII), Adventure Tour Operators of India (ATOAI), The International Eco Tourism society (TIETS) and International Mountain Bicycling Association. The company has its offices in all the metropolitan cities and in foreign countries like Dubai and USA.

“Initially one can enjoy hot air ballooning, parasailing, zorbing and mountain biking. Later, the company intends to introduce more offbeat recreation facilities like obstacle courses, all terrain vehicles, artificial rock climbing and trampoline bungee,” says Kukreti. The state tourism minister, Prakash Pant, launched the company on Friday at Dhalwala, Rishikesh.

It holds the merit of being the first and only Indian company to be a “360-degree integration” adventure travel company.



Frameboxx opens new centre in Doon
Tribune News Service

Dehradun, November 7
Frameboxx Animation and Visual Effects opened their state-of-the-art training centre at Dehradun.

CEO and Executive Director of Frameboxx, Naveen Gupta formally inaugurated the center here today. Uttarakhand Minister for Tourism, Parkash Pant also graced the occasion.

Later addressing a press conference, Gupta said that Frameboxx aims to cater to the needs of all aspirants, who are keen to take up a profession in the animation and visual effects industry.

“Over the past few years, animation has taken the center stage in media and entertainment market and now more and more companies are actively using animation to realise their creative visions,” stated Naveen.

This has put animation on the list of preferred careers for students. All that is required is the right kind of training coupled with a strong industry interface, he added further.

Further giving details about the facilities at the Institute’s Dehradun center, Gupta disclosed that this centre has state of art labs, a clay modelling studio and a cafeteria.

“The ever growing requirement of the industry demands that training is interfaced with the industry and curriculum is updated on a regular basis. We ensure that our entire curriculum, instructors and training methodology stay continually updated as per the growing trend in the market. This has to be complemented with a high quality state of art infrastructure as well,” remarked Gupta.



Christians insecure

The Christian community is deeply hurt by the desecration of the Holy Bible. Even though some of the criminals were arrested, it is a matter of grave concern that the Mayor of the city went to the police station and used his influence to get these elements released.

This is the fifth incident of attacks on Christians in Uttarakhand in the last few months. Christians in the state don’t feel safe in such an atmosphere of terror and insecurity. We appeal to the state government to take stringent action against these elements that are spreading terror and disturbing peace and harmony.

— Christian Solidarity Society, Dehradun

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