A king walking on the road slips on banana-peel, next day he bans eating banana by anyone in his kingdom. Try subverting the irony between symptom and cause.
"Cars may drive growth and aspirations, but they can never meet the commuting needs of urban India. Cars choke cities, harm public health and guzzle more oil."
If Indian regulation for car-pollution are low or the road infrastructure in India is bad it doesn't mean cars can never meet the commuting needs. Cars are the major means of commuting in developed countries whether it's USA, Europe or Japan. If in India cars are not able to meet that requirement then its not cars which are to blame. The blame lies with infrastructure that exists in India. Rather than chalking out need of infrastructure, blame the cars, because that is more like environment-friendly, isn't it?
"as all cars -- small or big -- are heavily subsidised in Indian cities. But the hidden costs of using cars are enormous."
Does car-manufacture put state-governments on the edge of knife, when they negotiate for subsidies? No, state-governments happily shower their subsidies to lure these manufacturers so that state can have another mean of employment, jobs and gross production. If some widget/product price is reduced according to principles of trade then there is nothing wrong with it.
"Thus, we are certainly not paying the full cost of manufacture of our cars, let alone the cost of running or parking them."
Do they even know the concept called business or trade. First of all how are they measuring the full cost? On what parameters do they decide full cost? Just because there is lenience in taxes to manufacturers, reasoning is that it's not full price? To tell you the truth of economics, there shouldn't be unreasonable obstacles and taxes in the first place that businesses in India have to face.
"Public transport, on the other hand, gets a step-motherly treatment: our government penalises buses by taxing them higher than the much-pampered cars."
Public transports pay more because they are in business. How difficult was it to understand? They are making money from usage of buses. Individual cars do not make income from the usage. They forgot to mention the taxes imposed in taxis or cabs.
"Cars of today are truly akin to dinosaurs. They are not part of the solution to the pollution and climate mayhem."
Of course, cars are not solution to pollution problem, they are solution to transportation problem. What kind of statement is that?
"the major car companies are lining up for bailouts worth billions that are forcing Western governments to inject more money into the business – this, in turn, is fanning more greed and greater car dependency."
I was of the view that we were talking about India, how and when did USA enter into picture, is strange. The bailouts are result of bad business choices and dependency of employment on those industries. It has nothing to do with 'fanning greater car dependency'. In fact, the present conditions of bankruptcy to these industries will be a lesson to car-makers to make pollution-efficient cars.
Cities need mobility, not cars. Says Roychowdhury: “We need to re-design public policies to promote mobility for all -- scale up efficient public transport and implement effective tax policies to restrain car use.”
I agree with what they have concluded, but there is a way to reach at some conclusion. The way in which CSE has opted to reach this conclusion is fatally flawed. Cars of course, result in more pollution and more so in India(given the infrastructure). Most of people don't use cars(and stuck in traffic jams) just for funsies, they do it because there is no choice. The present infrastructure of transportation in India is not appropriate enough for a good-earning man who has option for car. The blame lies with infrastructure and improve, it should be.
Just for example, recently Delhi metro system has been a success in transportation. Why is it a success? - Is it because metro system was efficient as transportation or did they banned car-usage for people who lived near metro-stations?