Delhi government postpones odd-even scheme over exemptions

AAP MLA in Punjab gets trolled for burning crop to support farmers

The Delhi Transport Minister Kailash Gehlot on Friday tweeted "To encourage use of public transport during Odd- Even, Delhi govt to allow free travel for commuters in all DTC and Cluster buses from 13-17 November". "If 30 lakh two-wheelers are off the road, Delhi's public transport system can not accommodate the surge", added Gehlot.

The National Green Tribunal (NGT) on Friday stayed the implementation of Delhi government's Odd-Even vehicle rationing scheme for five days starting from November 13, and said it may stay its implementation. "We welcome the odd-even initiative and needless to say, have suspended peak pricing in Delhi", Ola said in a statement.

The Centre-run monitoring agency SAFAR (System of Air Quality and Weather Forecasting And Research) attributed the rise in pollution to the lowering of the "boundary layer" keeping pollutants trapped near the surface and preventing their escape into the upper layer of the atmosphere.

But as India's federal environmental court ruled against any exemptions ― not including emergency vehicles and those running on greener compressed natural gas (CNG), or most of Delhi's public transport ― local authorities said the scheme would be halted.

The green court on Saturday gave the go ahead to the odd-even scheme and also asked the city government to reconsider the four-times hike in the parking fee. It further added that it was not "feasible" to arrange such a large number of buses "at this stage".




While the Delhi government counsel also asked the tribunal if they shall "drop the idea of odd-even" as Delhi's air quality was improving, the tribunal asked the government to take a call, saying: "We are not going to give you a shelter on this one".

Meanwhile, the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) told the NGT they had warned the Delhi government orally in advance about the impending problem, which the latter denied.

It also rapped the DTC chairman-cum-managing director for not taking note of an NGT order on maintenance of buses and carrying out a rationalisation study so that the vehicles can be used more effectively.

"Why shall your officials not be imprisoned for violation of its order putting a ban on construction activities", Justice Kumar said.

The reading changed to 522 and 332 by 6 pm.

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