Odd-Even rule to be implemented without exemptions in Delhi

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Delhi government on Wednesday agreed to implement the odd-even scheme without any exemptions after the National Green Tribunal's rap last month.

Although the dates of the implementation of the odd-even scheme have not been specified as of now, sources in the Delhi government told Catch that the scheme is likely to take place before the end of year.

The counsel for the Delhi government said he would seek proper instructions and inform the bench accordingly.

The tribunal observed that air pollution was never at the normal level in Delhi and directed Punjab, Haryana, UP and Rajasthan governments to file the action plan afresh.

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NGT also questioned the NCR states about the fine, which would be levied, if the directions are not complied with. It had also stated that the road-rationing scheme would be implemented without any exemptions to women or two-wheelers, following which Delhi government had filed a review petition and asked for exemptions for both these categories. The bad air quality level affected many who have asthma or breathing problem.

Delhi's 2.5 PM pollution level in November had risen to 1,000, more than 500 times more than the prescribed limit set by the World Health Organisation. Apart from that its plan also consists of action against polluting vehicles and restricting the entry of trucks into Delhi during severe conditions. The bench further said that once formulated, actions under these action plans would need to be taken by each state depending on the air quality levels without any excuse.

Further, during the hearing, the NGT directed the Delhi Government and neighbouring States to clarify their action plans and how they would implement the Graded Resp-onse Action Plan (GRAP) given the severity of the air quality. "Please be clear by tomorrow. In this country, it is a dream to have prescribed norms of air quality", the bench observed.