Plea in High Court for buses to be run on CNG, LPG

Plea in High Court for buses to be run on CNG, LPG
With air pollution in the City increasing, a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) has been filed in the High Court seeking directions to convert all buses, including KSRTC and BMTC, to be run on CNG (compressed natural gas) and LPG (liquid petroleum gas).

City-based advocate Vinay Shivanand Naik, in the petition, has contended that due to the air pollution, 36 per cent of Bengaluru’s children are already experiencing significant health problems and 84 per cent have affected lung capacity.

The petition says that the young, elderly and poor are the most affected by air pollution. In 2004, in a petition filed by Karnataka Lorry Malikara Okkuta, the High Court had directed the government to evolve some scheme to give sufficient time to vehicle owners for replacement of old vehicles in a phased manner and to have vehicles converted to use CNG fuel in a phased manner. But till date, no action has been taken.

The petitioner submitted that studies by scientists at Tel Aviv University on pollution trends for 189 megacities by analysing eight years’ data from three of NASA’s high–tech aerosol monitoring satellites, shows Bengaluru experienced a 34 per cent increase in aerosol concentration (air pollution) from 2002 to 2010.

During the hearing of another petition, a judge of the High Court recently suggested the government to consider adopting the Delhi model of banning the entry of diesel vehicles into the City. The judge suggested to have odd and even numbered vehicles ply on alternate days. The government, in turn, sought directions from the court for a plan of action.

Says M N Sreehari, traffic expert and adviser to the government, “Why does the government have to wait for High Court or Supreme Court directions to act against polluting vehicles.”

“The government has done nothing to improve the roads in its two and half years. The funds allocated for the purpose have gone down the drain and Bengaluru has come to be recognised for the worst roads in the country. CNG and LPG can make a big difference as the bigger diesel vehicles are the major contributors for pollution,” he added.

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