New Delhi, Nov 24, : In the face of worsening air quality, Wednesday’s Supreme Court re-imposed an interim ban against Delhi-NCR construction activities.It also told the government that it should not wait for the air quality to worsen and instead plan ahead based on the expected levels of air pollution in future.A bench consisting of Justices D.Y.Ramana, Chief Justice N.V.Ramana, and headed by Chief Justice N.V.Ramana.Chandrachud, Surya Kant, and Chief Justice N.V.Ramana sat on a bench that included Justices D.Y.
It said that non-polluting construction activities such as plumbing, interior decoration, and electrical work are allowed to continue.The states will use the labour cess collected for the welfare of construction workers to provide subsistence during the period when construction activities are banned and pay the wages notified under the Minimum Wages Act.
Solicitor General Tushar Mehta stated that a plan for grading response was prepared.This plan identifies Steps to be taken in accordance with worsening ambient air pollution.The bench was informed by the Solicitor General Tushar Mehta that the plan for graded response envisages that actions will be taken when there is a significant deterioration in air quality.
Accordingly to the court’s order, “In other words: Action is proposed after air quality has declined.” Instead of waiting for air quality to deteriorate, we direct that necessary measures be taken in anticipation of any deterioration.
It stressed that the Commission (for Air Quality Management/CAQM), must engage expert agencies with domain expertise in meteorological data modelling and must conduct a scientific study on air quality based upon available data from previous years.This must take into account recorded levels of air pollution.
“The study must account for seasonal variations and other relevant parameters.The bench stated that once a scientific model has been developed, which includes wind velocity and other natural phenomena, the graded plan can be modified to allow for actions to be taken in advance based on expected changes in air quality.
It was further stated that Steps can be planned at most a week in advance, and even earlier depending on the expected levels of air pollution in future.
“The Commission shall perform the above exercise within one month and report the Steps taken to comply with this direction,” stated the bench, reserving the matter for a further hearing on November 29.
The top court ordered was based on Aditya Dubey’s plea for direction to ban stubble burning.This chokes Delhi every year.
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