Only emergency vehicles to get exemption in odd-even scheme

Faith Castro
November 14, 2017

The Delhi government has filed an appeal in the National Green Tribunal seeking certain changes in NGTs previous directions. When the scheme is launched, odd numbered vehicles are allowed to ply on odd dates and even numbered vehicles are allowed on even dates in order to combat vehicular pollution. The National Green Tribunal on Friday directed the Delhi government to submit data or studies on the basis of which it has planned to introduce the odd-even car-rationing scheme for five days from next week.

PM2.5 refers to atmospheric particulate matter (PM) that has a diameter of less than 2.5 micrometers, which is about 3 percent the diameter of a human hair. "Their number is more than 50% of the registered vehicles and they operate on fuel mixed with oil", said the NGT. "In light of the two conditions by NGT on two-wheelers and women, at the moment we are calling it off". After the meeting was concluded the odd-even was called off and the AAP chose to file another plea to reconsider the scheme with the exemption condition given by the party.

Low wind speeds, dust from construction sites, rubbish burning in the capital and firecrackers used in festivals contribute to increased pollution levels. Large parts of northern India are also affected - in fact the air in some cities is worse than in Delhi. However, unhappy with the NGT order, the Delhi government expressing its inability to enforce the odd-even scheme and said it will move the Tribunal on Monday requesting a review of its order and if the exemptions are granted. As the NGT is to take up the hearing today, there is no show of the lawyer from the Delhi government's side.

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In response to the Delhi government's charge that Haryana was not responsive to its requests for a meeting to discuss the smog situation and stubble burning, Khattar on Monday landed in Delhi and said he was in Delhi and ready to have a meeting with Kejriwal.

New Delhi continued to reel under smoggy conditions on Monday as a thick haze reduced visibility and air quality remained at "hazardous" levels.

The worldwide permissible limit for PM2.5 - particles in air with diameter less than 2.5mm - is 25 units (micro gram per cubic metre), while for India it is 60 units. The harassment one goes through as a woman using public transport was enough to prompt me to put my savings into a depreciating asset; it wasn't just a vehicle for me, it was my independence. Pollution in Delhi gets aggravated during winter months. "I truly feel that this government is not very serious about controlling pollution", she reprimanded.

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