Apex court verdict on diesel-run SUVs today

Apex court verdict on  diesel-run SUVs today

In a series of measures to clean up the air in Delhi, the Supreme Court on Tuesday said that it may bar registration of diesel-run SUVs, cars with engine capacity of over 2000 cc and commercial vehicles for three-four months, besides increasing by 100 per cent green cess levied on trucks entering the city.

A three-judge bench presided over by Chief Justice T S Thakur also indicated that the court would ban burning of all sorts of wastes and regulating construction activities, which are considered as major reasons for raising pollution in the city.

The bench, also comprising Justice A K Sikri and Justice R Banumathi, said it would pass its detailed order on Wednesday to restrict all diesel-run taxis in the city and making the pavement green.

The court also concurred with the suggestion of banning entry of trucks registered before 2005 from entering the National Capital Region and raise the pollution charges from Rs 700 to 1,400 and Rs 1,300 to 2,600 depending on trucks sizes.

Rejecting the plea by car dealers against National Green Tribunal order banning registration of new diesel vehicles, the bench observed, “People's life is at stake and you are interested in selling cars.”

During the hearing, the bench also asked the counsel representing the Centre and the Delhi government to come out with comprehensive long and short term plans to tackle air pollution.

“Why don’t you people take credit of cleaning Delhi air? You could enumerate the steps to be taken and why you are asking the court to do it,” the court asked Solicitor General Ranjit Kumar and other counsel.

Hearing applications relating to a 1984 PIL filed by environmentalist-advocate M C Mehta, the court told Delhi government advocate Wasim A Qadri, it was open for the government to bring in odd-even formula for running of cars.

“We cannot say anything on it. We are not too sure that this is the only way. This is one of the measures. It is for you (Delhi government ) to implement,” the bench told him.

The court also said that it would direct the apex court registry to provide a bicycle stand as desired by senior advocate K T S Tulsi in a letter to the CJI.

Delhi government counsel said that there would be vacuum cleaning of city roads from April 1 next and 4,000 contract buses for transportation.

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