Tribune News Service
New Delhi, December 16
The Supreme Court on Thursday expressed satisfaction over the measures taken by the Centre and Commission for Air Quality Management in NCR and adjoining areas to curb air pollution. It asked it to invite suggestions from the public and experts on further steps for a permanent solution to the problem.
A Bench led by CJI NV Ramana posted the matter for further hearing in the first week of February after Solicitor General Tushar Mehta said, “We have a committee for long-term solution with National Environmental Engineering Research Institute (NEERI) experts on board to find a solution so that knee-jerk reaction for every year is not needed.”
Knee-jerk reaction won’t work
We have a committee with National Environmental Engineering Research Institute experts on board to find a solution so that knee-jerk reaction is not needed. —SC Bench
Earlier, Mehta informed the court that the commission had lifted the ban on medical, paddy, dairy, paper and textile industries in view of improvement in air quality. However, the ban on construction activities would continue and schools would continue to function in virtual mode for the time being, the commission informed the court.
Mehta said, “All hospital constructions are permitted and for the rest of the construction activity, interiors can continue but not actual construction…There is continuous inspection by 40 flying squads.” He said milk and dairy processing units in NCR have been permitted to resume 24×7 operations by the commission.
Similarly, medicines, drugs and life-saving equipment industries can resume full-time operations, while paper and pulp processing industries, paddy, rice industries and textile and garment industries five day a week.
The industries closed due for failure to switch over to PNG can now operate eight hours a day, the commission had told the court.