The National Green Tribunal on Friday termed the Delhi government’s odd-even road rationing plan a “farce”, and said the scheme cannot be implemented from next week without its permission.
The tribunal is likely to decide on the matter in its next hearing at 11am on Saturday.
Arvind Kejriwal-led government announced on Thursday that the scheme, which allows private cars with odd and even registration numbers to ply only on alternate days, would be rolled out from November 13 to 17 in view of the rising pollution in Delhi. However, experts questioned the timing of the move, given that the air quality may improve by then, and pointed out that two earlier editions in 2016 had failed to alleviate pollution levels.
“Odd-even won’t be implemented without a green signal from us. We are not stopping it yet. Hearing on Saturday,” the tribunal directed.
“It is a farce. The publicity you gave to odd-even 2, did you give to destination buses too?” it asked the Delhi government, referring to the non-stop buses launched earlier this year in a bid to encourage car owners to travel by public transport.
A bench headed by NGT chairperson Justice Swatanter Kumar asked the Delhi government to provide details of the ambient air quality during the earlier implementation of the odd-even scheme. It also directed the government’s counsel to be ready with all the requisite data and reasons for implementing another edition of the same.
“Give us figures on how much cars contribute to the total air pollution of the city… also give us figures on how much one diesel-run heavy vehicle pollutes when compared to petrol cars. What is the contribution of small petrol cars in Delhi’s pollution,” the court asked the government.