With an aim to curb the pollution menace in New Delhi, National Green Tribunal (NGT) on Monday directed the Arvind Kejriwal government and city police to impound four wheelers running on diesel in the national capital under ‘Environment Protection Act’. The bench also asked authorities concerned to remove vehicles which are already impounded from many years and are in scraped conditions with immediate effect from Delhi, a report said. It detected the AAP government to hold meet with neighbouring states on the issue of identifying land pockets to be used for impounding four wheelers. Delhi Development Authority has suggested two lands in the city for impounding purposes. Earlier, National Green Tribunal (NGT) had ordered Delhi government to strictly stop over 10-year old diesel vehicles from plying on the roads in the national capital. The government had also faced a barrage of searching questions on the alarming air pollution levels. “Why are you not effectively stopping 10 years old diesel vehicles? Issue directions to all the concerned authorities to take off all diesel vehicles which are over 10 years old from the roads,” a bench headed by NGT Chairperson Swatanter Kumar said.
The bench expressed its displeasure that its earlier order banning 10 years old diesel vehicles was not being seriously executed and hoards of them were still visible on the roads with the traffic police doing nothing in the matter. Advocate Tarunvir Singh Khehar, who appeared for Delhi government, told the tribunal that the authorities were challaning such vehicles but “we don’t have space to park the impounded vehicles.”
“We are challaning such vehicles but we have no space for parking. We have identified 21 such places,” he said. To this, the NGT asked him to move an application before it in this regard so that appropriate directions could be passed to the Delhi Development Authority to provide space for parking of seized vehicles.
However, Additional Solicitor General (ASG) Pinky Anand, who was appearing for the Centre, told the green panel that diesel vehicles were not the major contributor to pollution and vehicular emission. She said no coercive steps should be taken against diesel vehicles until the matter was heard in its entirety. The bench posted the matter for hearing on November 8.
With agency inputs