In a relief to taxi operators of Manali,the National Green Tribunal (NGT) stayed its order to levy environmental charges of Rs 2,500 and Rs 1,000 on diesel and petrol-operated tourists’ vehicles, respectively, for Rohtang Pass. The tourist vehicles having capacity of more than five persons were to be charged Rs 5,000 per day.
Within hours of the NGT orders, the taxi operators called off their week-long strike bringing respite to the tourists as well as hoteliers who were facing cancellations from tourists.
The tribunal, however, refused to relax the 1,000 vehicle limit — 600 petrol and 400 diesel — playing to the pass.
The taxi operators and the state government are seeking permissions for plying more vehicles to Rohtang Pass as the tourists’ influx has increased at Manali this season due to Nepal earthquake. The tribunal has fixed the date of hearing on June 8 to hear further arguments.