The National Green Tribunal (NGT) has pulled up the Ministry of Heavy Industries for failing to come up with an incentive policy to scrap old vehicles.
“You made tall claims before us that you are going to provide incentive for scrapping of vehicles, but did nothing. You say something before us and forget as you step outside the Tribunal. The Ministry of Heavy Industries had assured us that it was in the process of providing methodology and incentives to those scrapping their vehicles… We direct the ministry to take clear instructions in this regard,” said NGT chairperson Swatanter Kumar.
The Tribunal has banned petrol vehicles older than 15 years and diesel vehicles older than 10 years from plying in Delhi-NCR.
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Kumar also said that the Tribunal had asked the ministry to look into the matter almost a year ago but nothing had been done so far.
The lawyer for the ministry, Balendu Shekhar, told the Tribunal that it was examining the viability of the scrapping policy and was discussing the issue with the finance ministry. Shekhar also said that the ministry had asked states to give their feedback on the policy but none of them had responded.
The Tribunal had ordered the de-registration of diesel vehicles older than 10 years in a phased manner, saying that vehicles older than 15 years should be the first ones to go. The government and police have raised concerns that there is not enough land in Delhi to accommodate old, impounded vehicles.
The Tribunal asked Punjab, Haryana, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh governments to hold a meeting with chief secretary of the Delhi government to solve the problem and identify land in border areas to park these vehicles.
The tribunal has also asked the four states to identify areas where dispersion of air is higher and vehicle density is less so that old vehicles can be given permission to ply there.
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