Enhance fine for driving without PUC certificate: Delhi government

New Delhi: Concerned over alarming pollution levels in the national capital, Delhi government has moved the National Green Tribunal seeking enhancement of the fine against vehicles which are without a valid pollution-under- control (PUC) certificate.

The Environment Department of Delhi government, in its plea before the green panel, has sought directions to enhance the imposition of penalty/fine to Rs 5,000 under Section 15 of the NGT Act as per 'polluter pays principle'.

Presently, if a vehicle is not carrying a valid PUC certificate, it is liable to be prosecuted under Section 190(2) of the Motor Vehicles Act and a penalty of Rs 1,000 for the first offence and Rs 2,000 for every subsequent offence of violation has been prescribed under the law.

Delhi government has averred that it has no powers to enhance the penalties as prescribed under the MV Act and, therefore, the present application is being filed by the Environment Department seeking enhancement of penalty/fine. In its plea, Delhi government has contended that Delhi is facing an acute problem of air pollution and the Chief Minister has decided to take stringent steps against persons causing vehicular pollution under NGT Act and polluter pays principle.

"Government of Delhi is committed to provide clean air to its residents and is taking various steps. It has already passed orders empowering the SDMs and Tehsildars to prosecute persons causing air pollution through burning of garbage, waste, etc. and causing pollution through dust.

"Similarly the Government of NCT Delhi wants to take deterrent steps so that persons driving vehicles in Delhi get their vehicles with the standard emission norms," the plea said.

The city government has further informed that authorised pollution checking centres are spread all over Delhi and, at present, "388 centres for petrol/CNG-driven vehicles and 273 centres for diesel-driven vehicles are functioning all over Delhi".

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