Air pollution: NGT slams Delhi govt over report on vehicles

New Delhi: The National Green Tribunal today pulled up the Delhi government over its 'incomplete' inspection report on air pollution caused by vehicles entering the capital.

The Tribunal had constituted three teams with officials from transport enforcement, Central Pollution Control Board and Delhi Police to check vehicles entering Delhi at different entry points between 5PM and 7AM.

The Delhi government told the Tribunal that it checked 112 trucks for the age, weight and extent of pollution caused by heavy vehicles entering Delhi.

While 97 trucks were found to be overloaded, only eight were not conforming to the permissible pollution standards, the Delhi government said.

"How can you say that 97 overloaded trucks were not causing pollution. You found 97 vehicles to be overloaded but only 8 were polluting? Why so? How is that possible?" a bench headed by NGT Chairperson Swatanter Kumar said.

The Delhi government also told the Tribunal that the inspection team did not involve Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) officials.

"Which parameters were measured? Did you measure PM (particulate matter) 2.5? Are your officers not supposed to know what they are testing. This is the state of affairs? What are you people doing? You passed or failed a vehicle on what basis ?" the bench queried.

On this the DPCC officials said they had tested the vehicles only on two parameters -- opacity of smoke and carbon dioxide emissions.

"You were supposed to test seven parameters but you have based your findings only on two. You people are supposed to be experts and this is what you do?" the bench said while asking them to carry out inspections again tonight.

When the officials contended that they had no equipment to measure the other parameters, the bench said,"If you don't have the equipment why can't they buy one? You people are really good at making excuses".

With regard to DTC's plea seeking 500 acres of land from Delhi Development Authority for parking of 10,000 buses in the national capital, the authority said it was not possible for it to grant any land.

DDA's counsel Rajiv Bansal said due to Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Act DDA has lost thousands of crores worth of land.

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