SC issues notices to ministries on EPCA report on dual price policy

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New Delhi, Feb 1 (UNI) The Supreme Court today issued notices to the Union Ministry for Environment and Forest and the Ministry for Surface Transport on the report of Environment and Pollution Controlling Authority (EPCA), saying that dual pricing policy of the Government for diesel and petrol has led to tremendous increase in the number of diesel-driven vehicles in Delhi, adding to pollution in the city.

A bench comprising Chief Justice K G Balakrishnan and Justices Arijit Pasayat and S H Kapadia directed the two ministries to file their response to the report within three weeks.

Amicus Curiae, Senior Counsel Harish Salve, suggested to the court that the Government should try to abolish the dual pricing policy and also avoid giving subsidy on diesel so that the number of diesel-driven vehicles can be brought under control, otherwise it will be extremely difficult to control the increasing level of pollution in the national capital.

According to the EPCA report, the total number of diesel-run vehicles in the city in 1995 was around two lakh, which has gone up to 12 lakh.

Senior Counsel F S Nariman suggested the Ahmedabad-type of public transport system in Delhi, in which both the public and private sectors participate, so that the bluelines can be phased out from the city.

He also suggested that big industrial houses like the Tatas should be given the responsibilty of running a pollution-free and efficient public transport system in Delhi.

The court was also requested to consider the issue of phasing out vehicles, which were 15-year-old.


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