Health Care

Delhi government calls off its odd-even scheme despite NGT clearance

Delhi government calls off its odd-even scheme despite NGT clearance

The Delhi government has filed an appeal in the National Green Tribunal seeking certain changes in NGTs previous directions. Ashok Agarwal, another advocate with the Supreme Court told Firstpost that there is no legal bar on the government in filing a review petition in the NGT even if a similar petition is being heard in the Supreme Court. The review petition co-incided with the re-opening of schools in the city amid hazardous levels of air pollution.

Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi on Monday took a swipe at the Delhi Government and the Centre for their inaction to tackle rising air pollution in the National Capital.

The Arvind Kejriwal-led government had scrapped its plan to implement the scheme from November 13-17 after the NGT on Saturday said there would be no exemption for women, two-wheelers and government servants.ANI reported that 69 trains were delayed, 22 rescheduled and 8 cancelled due to the smog , As Reported By IE. "We are re-filing before NGT that two wheelers and women be exempted from Odd Even", Rai said while addressing a press conference here. The upper limit of "good" quality air is 50. Deputy chief minister Manish Sisodia's media advisor Arunodoy Prakash said that Delhi's present public transport system can not bear the gargantuan load of additional commuters that lack of exemption to two-wheelers would cause.

Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) recorded that Delhi's average AQI at 7 p.m. was 445 (on a scale of 0 to 500) while the PM2.5 hovered around 442 units, considered "severe". Swaraj India Party's Delhi Unit Chief, Anupam said that "I am not, in principle, opposed to the odd-even scheme as and when it is required but Delhi's public transport is in shambles".

The Delhi government counsel said from next year, with better preparation, it would be in a position to implement the odd-even scheme without any exemption. Delhi's public transportation can not take that load.

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"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 heavily crowded public transport buses".

"This government gives highest priority to the safety and security of women". The smog situation in the National Capital has been deteriorating for nearly past one week.

The plea seeks directions to the Centre and the states on stubble burning, road dust and effective implementation of the Odd-Even auto rationing scheme.

Soon after the order, the government rolled back it's decision to implement the policy and said that the socio-economic costs of enforcing it without exemption will be too high for Delhi to bear. Other state governments would do well to learn from AAP's example.