Transport sector in India has immense growth opportunities and is posed to grow enormously in the future. However, public transport sector has been waning thanks to government monopoly. Private sector involvement has been very limited. Bucking this trend has been the slow growth of Intermediate Para-Transit vehicles which has silently started a transport revolution- as a mass transport mode for poor in India. The paper analyses its role and identifies the need to recognise and legalise its existence for the benefit of the people of India.
Sustainable Transport has often been the buzzword for transport planners and policy makers. They involve the systemic design of a transportation network which fully integrates, involve and evolve various modes of transport of providing a seamless, affordable and efficient service for the people. This also takes into regard the cultural; social and economic scenarios of regions and the behavioural patterns of the commuters. This means, transport plan for a particular region shall cater to the realities and requirements of the people living or commuting. This is a market driven mechanism where operation of services are designed to cater to the demands for the commuting segment. Developing of Metro Rail/Light networks, introduction of buses and boats shall presuppose a market situational analysis which generates information on the number of passengers, origin and destination, type and preferred mode of service etc. This would mean recognising those transport modes which are considered as an integral part of a daily commuter?s life. Cycles of Amsterdam, Walking in Great Britain, and Suburban Trains in Mumbai are fine examples of this proposition. It is in this context that the role of Intermediate Para-transit systems (IPT) exist which acts as a bridge between the people and their destinations. This paper is aimed to highlight the role of IPTs in supporting the mobility requirements of the vast population in India and inquire into the barriers facing the sector, a loss to an average Indian commuter.