The Delhi High Court has said that it would not allow the use of solar control black films in cars, which have been banned due to security reasons. A bench of justices Sanjiv Khanna and Chander Shekhar also refused to strike down a law prohibiting use of black films for windscreens and side glasses of four wheelers, saying it was in “larger public interest”. It, however, said that it was neither passing any order nor was it inclined to give any relief on the plea seeking direction to authorities not to take any step against the petitioner for using solar control black film in his car as he was suffering from a disorder caused by ultraviolet (UV) rays. The court said there are technologies available, by which an individual, who is suffering from the rare genetic disorder caused by UV rays, can easily protect himself. “The decision to enforce the ban on the use of the tinted glasses beyond permissible limits is in public interest, so we are not going to interfere with it,” the bench observed.
The bench has now fixed the matter for April 4, by when it has asked 30-year-old petitioner Vipul Gambhir, to file his rejoinder to the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways’ reply opposing his demand. While citing the Supreme Court judgement in this regard, Advocate Farman Ali Magray, appearing for the ministry, submitted that there are alternative preventive measures that can be taken by such persons to protect themselves from UV rays. “Persons suffering from a rare genetic disorder caused by UV rays can use cream, sun-shed, protective clothing and other amenities available in the market,” the ministry said.
The ministry was responding to the plea by Gambhir, who is suffering from xeroderma pigmentosum, a rare autosomal recessive genetic disorder of DNA repair in which the ability to repair damage caused by UV light is deficient. He has said that due to his disease, doctors have advised him to use solar control film since his condition had deteriorated due to exposure to UV radiation.
Concerned over rising instances of criminals using black films for windscreens and side glasses of four wheelers, the Supreme Court in April 2012 had directed the states and union territories to strictly enforce the ban on the use of the tinted glasses beyond permissible limits. Manufacturers may produce vehicles with tinted glasses which provide for 70 per cent visual light transmission (VLT) for safety glasses on windscreen (front and rear) and 40 per cent VLT for side glasses, the apex court had then said.
Subsequently, a committee was constituted to discuss the issue relating to exemption on security grounds to certain categories of protectees from the apex court order banning the black films on the vehicles.