January 19, 2018

Delhi government files plea in NGT seeking changes in its previous directions

13 November 2017, 06:03 | Winifred Adams

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The Supreme Court agreed to hear the petition today itself, saying that "We can not ignore the pollution".

However, the decision was dropped by the Delhi government after the National Green Tribunal's (NGT) said none of the vehicles would be exempted.

Meanwhile, the Supreme Court today agreed to hear a petition filed by advocate RK Kapoor which seeks "immediate measures" to check the rising pollution in Delhi and its surrounding areas, which has become an global headline for a week now.

Earlier in the day, the NGT questioned the Delhi government for not filing a review petition and wondered if its statement on Saturday was a media gimmick.

The NGT, which had given a conditional nod to the Odd-Even scheme, said that it should be implemented as and when PM (particulate matter) 10 level goes above 500 micrograms per cubic metre and PM 2.5 level crosses the limit of 300 micrograms per cubic metre and persist for 48 hours at a stretch.

The AAP government also said that exemptions are also crucial for women's safety. Naginder Sharma, media advisor to the Chief Minister of Delhi told Firstpost that a review petition will be filed in the NGT today.

The government claimed that the exemption was done keeping in mind the security of women in the city.

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Delhi Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) President Manoj Tiwari also attacking the Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal said that "Kejriwal government completely failed in taking preventive steps against pollution, and it has taken immature steps to deal with the crisis".

The Delhi government had chose to shut down schools for five days after the air quality index reached severe levels.

Meanwhile, all government and private schools in Gurugram will remain closed today in view of the alarming air pollution levels.

While criticism against the odd-even formula is sharp and strong from several quarters, many experts still feel that the AAP's plan to control vehicular pollution should be allowed to implement in Delhi throughout the winter, when air pollution turns worst. Resorting to the odd-even scheme as a stop-gap arrangement will only work to disillusion the public from its marginal efficacy. Delhi's public transportation can not take that load.

Meanwhile, different political parties are lashing out at the Aam Aadmi party for not being able to curb the critical health emergency in the national capital.

Thus, the AAP government, which was supposed to implement the scheme by allowing vehicles with registration number ending with an even number on roads on even dates while those ending with an odd number on odd dates beginning from Monday to Friday (November 13-November 17) for a period of five days, has chose to cancel its plan for the time being.

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