NGT turns down Delhi government plea on odd-even exemptions

Delhi Pollution LIVE Green Court NGT Hearing On Delhi Government's Odd Even Rule To Curb Smog

However, the government on Saturday made a decision to call-off the exercise after the tribunal objected to exemptions for women drivers and two-wheelers given during the previous two exercises in January and April 2016.

The Supreme Court has also sought a response from the Centre and Uttar Pradesh, Haryana and Punjab state governments on a plea seeking to curb rising pollution in Delhi and the national capital region (NCR).

The tribunal had also rebuked the government, asking it to declare a health emergency in Delhi and apply necessary measures without delay after unsafe levels of particulate matter PM 2.5 and PM 10 persist for over 48 hours. The green panel had said it will hear the plea on Tuesday.

Following the NGT order, the Delhi government postponed the scheme and filed a review petition in the tribunal opposing the ban on Monday as schools in the city reopened after a five-day break.

Pulling up the Delhi government over their request of granting an exemption to women drivers for safety purposes, the NGT today asked Kejriwal government that "why it can't run ladies only buses to solve the problem of transport during the Odd-Even scheme".

The NGT also suggested that Delhi government take care of the logical explanations for Odd-Even exemption when they approach again. The government also asked the tribunal to direct neighbouring states to implement the scheme.

The Delhi government on Tuesday withdrew its review petition filed in the NGT for modifications of the odd-even vehicle rationing scheme after the tribunal denied giving exemptions on the scheme.

"In case the women drivers are not included in the exempted list, there may be a likelihood that such women passengers do not find themselves comfortable while travelling in crowded public transport buses".

Following the tribunal's order, the Delhi government withdrew its petition around noon.

Delhi has been experiencing severe air quality and has been reeling under a blanket of thick haze, as pollution levels breached permissible standards multiple times.

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