SC Pulls up Centre and Delhi Govt, Says It's 'Emergency-Like' Situation

NGT suggests water sprinkling to reduce effects of toxic air

Meanwhile, the Supreme Court today agreed to hear a petition filed by advocate RK Kapoor which seeks "immediate measures" to check the rising pollution in Delhi and its surrounding areas, which has become an worldwide headline for a week now. 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.

Meanwhile, all government and private schools in Gurugram will remain closed today in view of the alarming air pollution levels.

Gargava of the CPCB, who is in charge of monitoring air quality, said Delhi's air has been consistently in the "hazardous" zone, despite measures such as a halt to construction and increasing auto parking charges four-fold to encourage people to use public transportation.

On Saturday, the government put the plan on hold after the green tribunal objected to exemptions granted to women and two-wheelers.

The question which everyone is now asking, is what the Arvind Kejriwal government is planning to do now that the government's odd-even plan is in limbo.

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".

He also warned that though the current situation will be tackled somehow, but the Delhi government should take up solid long-term comprehensive measures, otherwise Delhi will be forced to face such a crisis again. "We need to exempt them from odd-even scheme", Prakash added. "By taking a minimum conservative estimate, at least 25 lakh two wheeler owners will have to use other modes of public transport on a particular day. the government will require at least 2500 extra buses for successful implementation of Odd-Even Scheme (sic.)", the petition read. Adding another wave of commuters may result in collapse of public transportation system. "We are re-filing before NGT that two wheelers and women be exempted from Odd Even", Rai said while addressing a press conference here. "If odd even is allowed without any exemption, than women's safety might be at risk".

On November 11, the NGT gave a conditional nod to the Delhi government's proposal to implement the odd-even scheme for five days starting from November 13.

Meanwhile, different political parties are lashing out at the Aam Aadmi party for not being able to curb the critical health emergency in the national capital.

Will the odd-even formula help to reduce pollution in Delhi?

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



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