To check pollution, the Supreme Court on Monday imposed an environment compensatory charge (ECC) ranging between Rs 700 to Rs 1,300 on commercial vehicles entering the Capital as a transit route for their onward journey to neighbouring states.
The bench headed by Chief Justice HL Dattu accepted all suggestions drafted by amicus curiae and senior advocate Harish Salve, in consultation with Solicitor General Ranjit Kumar for the Centre and senior advocate Dushyant Dave, appearing for the Delhi government.
The court said compensation charge will be imposed at the rate of Rs 700 for light duty vehicles and two-axle trucks.
Three and four axle trucks would be charged Rs 1,300. Vehicles carrying essential commodities — food stuffs and oil tankers — passenger vehicles and ambulances won’t have to pay the cess.
It also directed the Delhi government to issue an appropriate notification to levy the charge forthwith which will be operative for four months starting from November 1 to February 29, 2016 on an experimental basis. This order will override any order to the contrary by any authority, it directed. To review the mechanism, it posted the matter for further consideration in the third week of February.
However, it clarified that commercial vehicles carrying essential commodities, food, passengers and emergency vehicles, including ambulances, would be exempted. According to the order, the money so collected would be used by the Delhi government to augment public transport and roads, particularly vulnerable users like cyclists and pedestrians. The government will furnish accounts of receipts to the court on a weekly basis.