The Supreme Court, while hearing public interest litigation (PIL) on the grim situation due to Delhi air pollution, orally observed that degraded Delhi air quality and the 'problem of pollution has to be solved scientifically with a graded plan'. Urging the CM Arvind Kejriwal-led government to implement measures in anticipation, the top court asked, "Why should Delhites suffer?". This holds relevance against the air quality in the national capital fluctuating between the 'very poor' to the 'severe' category. As per SAFAR India, on November 24 the Delhi AQI stood at 280.
A special bench headed by Chief Justice of India NV Ramana and comprising Justices DY Chandrachud and Surya Kant stated that competent authorities 'cannot really micro manage' issues stemming out of stubble burning after Senior Advocate Vikas Singh stated that farmers are not fined for the crop disposal ahead of elections. Additionally, the Bench enquired why the bureaucracy is not intervened in carrying talks with farmers or scientists opinions taken into consideration.
Delhi government files fresh affidavit before Supreme Court in Air Pollution PIL
In the latest affidavit filed by the Delhi government, 'action points' and 'action taken' by agencies are enumerated. Key points in the affidavit are as follows:
- 372 water sprinkling machines and tankers have been deployed and an average of 25 km road length is covered with water sprinklers per day.
- In a bid to intensify public transport services, the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation intends to induct 432 coaches to the existing 2246 Delhi metro coaches.
- To deplete the usage of generator sets, the electricity board is asked to ensure 24*7 uninterrupted power supply
- 1951 inspections were conducted in the month of November to check garbage burning in landfills. 337 garbage burning sites were doused in November while 1531 notices for the same were issued.
- 56 enforcement teams are deployed across 92 petrol stations from 7 am to 7 pm to stop the plying of polluting vehicles by imposing heavy fines.
- Delhi Pollution Control Committee has deployed 585 enforcement teams to ensure stringent compliance with dust control norms to check illegal waste disposal and monitor dust mitigation measures.
- To educate the general public, public notices are published in the leading newspapers regarding vehicular pollution every fortnightly.
- Approximately 30 lakh SMSs have been sent to vehicle owners to get their vehicles checked in adherence to anti-pollution norms.
- Actions are taken against petrol and diesel-run cars which are older than 15 years and 10 years.
- Industries are monitored and inspected for only approved fuels and actions have been taken.
- Work from home has been ordered for all government employees except that of Railways and National Security.
Image: PTI/ANI/Representative Image