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PIL claims odd-even misdirected: HC seeks Centre, LG reply

Delhi high court

New Delhi : Delhi High Court today sought responses from the Centre and Lieutenant Governor on a PIL alleging that the government has “maliciously misdirected themselves” to slash the number of vehicles on road by the odd-even scheme instead of enforcing pollution control rules.

A bench of Chief Justice G Rohini and Justice Jayant Nath issued notice to the Ministry of Home Affairs and the LG and sought their replies by March 30 on the petition which also alleges that the rise in vehicle-generated air pollution in Delhi was due to “non-enforcement and non-implementation” of the 1988 Motor Vehicle Act, which prescribes punishment and fines for driving a polluting vehicle.

The petition by NGO ‘Campaign for People Participation in Development Planning’ has claimed that pollution tests carried out at the checking centres were a “sham” and pollution under control (PUC) certificates were being “casually issued” with the knowledge of the government and its agencies.

“Instead of checking vehicles and stopping the offending vehicles from being driven on road, the respondents, who are guilty of dereliction of duty on their part to enforce and implement section 190, maliciously misdirected themselves to cut the number of vehicle on road by prohibiting even and odd numbered vehicles from being driven on alternate days, in manner and terms contrary to the very object and purpose of the Act,” said the petition, filed through advocate Anil Aggarwal.

The NGO has also claimed that such action (odd-even scheme) also “impinges on fundamental rights of the people”.

AAP government had yesterday announced the second phase of the odd-even scheme of car rationing from April 15 to 30.

The NGO said that due to the “continued failure” of the respondents to enforcing section 190 of the Motor Vehicle Act, vehicle generated air pollution level has gravely risen in past years, endangering health of the people of the capital.

It has sought directions to MHA and LG to “immediately and strictly enforce and implement section 190 of the Act” to prevent polluting vehicles from being driven on the roads.

The society has also sought carrying out of surprise inspections of pollution control centres to ensure PUC certificates were being issued after carrying out all prescribed tests.

It has also sought an immediate survey of number of house -hold factories and industrial units “illegally operating in unauthorized colonies” and their removal, saying they too contribute towards air pollution.

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