news Friday, April 24, 2015 - 05:30
The Karnataka High Court on Thursday said that the state government is liable for prosecution if it did not follow the directions of the Karnataka State Pollution Control Board (KSPCB) and directed the government to submit an action plan on compliance with KSPCB directions which was issued in August 2014, states a report by The New Indian Express.    A division bench of Chief Justice D H Waghela and Justice Ram Mohan Reddy observed that several of the KSPCB directions had not been followed by the government. Observing that vehicular emmissions can cause health problems including respiratory diseases and cancer, the bench said, “The KSPCB has been inactive for the last 30 years. This inaction is violation of right to life as ruled by the Supreme Court. We will treat it."   When M Madan Gopal, additional Chief Secretary and Nodal Officer for Traffic Control and Pollution Issues, told the bench they have taken short-term steps and proposed a few long-term ones to tackle the rising pollution in the city, the bench said that merely writing letters cannot be considered as implementation of directives.    Transport Minister Ramegowda, who was present in the court, informed the HC about the steps that the transport department had taken to bring down pollution levels.    In 2014-15, 12 lakh vehicles were checked for noise and air pollution, of which cases were booked against 12,000 vehicles and Rs 56 lakh was collected in fines. Rs 12.30 lakh has already been collected in fines after cases were booked against 3,300 vehicles till January 22, 2015, adds the report. 
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