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The NGT said there will be no exemption for women, two-wheelers and government servants.
  • Saturday, November 11, 2017 - 14:11

The National Green Tribunal on Saturday gave the go ahead to the odd-even vehicle rationing scheme from November 13-17 and said there will be no exemption for women, two-wheelers and government vehicles.

It said that in future the odd-even scheme will automatically come into force if the PM2.5 level goes above 300 and PM10 crosses the 500 mark.

The NGT also asked the Delhi government to reconsider the decision on hiking parking fees. 

The NGT ruled that only emergency vehicles such as ambulances and MCD garbage vans and fire brigade vehicles will be exempted.

"The odd-even will go on. No exemption of any kind to any one including two-wheelers, women, public officers or politicians, except essential services. Odd-even will come in force by default in future in case Delhi's air gets severe," NGT Chairperson Justice Swatanter Kumar said. 

Asking the Delhi government to reconsider hike in parking fees, he said: "Why should the common man suffer. Why should burden come on the common man? We are unable to appreciate this parking fee hike decision." 

Rajiv Bansal, counsel representing DDA, told reporters after the hearing that the "NGT has said in its order that odd-even will be implemented automatically if the PM2.5 level goes above 300 and PM10 level goes above 500". 

The safe limit for PM2.5 and PM10 as per international standards is 25 and 60 microgrammes per cubic meters, while according to national standards it is 40 and 100 units respectively.

The country's top green court had on Friday questioned the efficacy of the Delhi government's proposed odd-even vehicle rationing scheme. 

It had sought details about how the earlier implementation of the odd-even scheme had helped in reducing the ambient air pollution in Delhi.

The court had directed the Delhi government to furnish the data before it starts the scheme again.

The Delhi government had on Thursday announced it would bring back the plan from November 13 to 17 to combat severe air pollution in Delhi and the NCR region.

The NGT had said while it was not against the scheme, it wanted to know how it helps.

"We will not allow odd-even vehicle rationalisation scheme until you prove that it's not counter-productive.

"Reports from DPCC (Delhi Pollution Control Committee) and CPCB (Central Pollution Control Board) showed there was no change in pollution level last time. It's clear that small cars are not major polluters. It's the diesel and overloaded vehicles," Justice Kumar had said. 

 

The NGT had also rapped the governments of Delhi and neighbouring states, saying "you've earned Delhi the title of the worst capital in the world" and ordered them to ensure an end to stubble burning.