SC Asks Centre To Take Emergency Steps To Check Air Pollution, Raps Delhi Government

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By: Anand Singh
Updated: 13 November, 2021 5:54 pm IST
Anti-smog guns used to curb air pollution in New Delhi. (Picture courtesy: Delhi environment minister Gopal Rai/Twitter account)

NEW DELHI: Delhi is breathing poisonous air. Even as the air quality continues to dip even further in the severe category in the national capital, the Supreme Court on Saturday said the Central government should consider a two-day lockdown in Delhi if necessary, in order to bring down the pollution level in Delhi-NCR.

The remarks of the top court came while hearing a plea by a 17-year-old Delhi student, concerning rising levels of air pollution in Delhi. The Supreme Court had earlier directed the Centre to take steps and asked the Delhi government to file an affidavit in this regard. ALSO READ: Covaxin 70.8 % Effective Against All Variants, 77.8 % Against Symptomatic: Journal On Phase 3 Trial

A Bench of Chief Justice of India NV Raman, Justices DY Chandrachud and Surya Kant said, “Tell us how we can reduce AQI from 500 by at least 200 points. Take some urgent measures. Can you think of a two day lockdown or something? How can people live?”

The top court noted that air quality in Delhi is already in the ‘severe’ category and would deteriorate further in another two to three days. The court asked the Centre to take an emergency decision, for now. “We will look at a long-term solution later,” the court added.

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On this, Solicitor General Tushar Mehta appearing for the Centre told the Supreme Court that in today’s meeting the government will have to focus on the emergency situation arising out of air pollution. The Supreme Court also asked the Delhi government about its decision to install smog towers and emission control projects.

Meanwhile, the hearing was posted for November 15 as the top court asked the Centre to inform it about the steps taken to control air pollution.

Meanwhile, taking a swipe at Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, Delhi Congress chief Anil Kumar Chaudhary said, “Today the Supreme Court has warned the centre and the Delhi government over the issue of air pollution and has said that how people are feeling suffocated.”

He said today when we are talking about air pollution, in the last few days we have seen how the river waters have been polluted. This has forced Kejriwal to accept that he has not worked enough to control pollution in Delhi, whether it is air, water or noise pollution.

The Delhi Congress leader said, “The way in which air is in severe category in Delhi shows that for the last seven years the governments have not worked over it. The Delhi government has only misled people in the name of smog towers and controlling pollution in the city.”

Accusing the city government for an “emergency” like situation, he added, “The Kejriwal government has failed on all fronts in Delhi and his government is responsible for the same and it was the reason why the Supreme Court has slammed the governments.”

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