SC Notice To Delhi Govt On Plea Challenging Odd-Even Scheme, Seeks Pollution Data

Mumbai: The Supreme Court on Wednesday issued notice to Delhi government on Odd-Even scheme, and directed the Centre, Delhi government and Central Pollution Control Board to bring on record the pollution data of Delhi for the month of October till November 14 for this year, and also sought pollution data from October to December of the last year.

A bench headed by Justice Arun Mishra said: “We want pollution data till November, and we want a record of the last year too.”

A PIL was filed in the court challenging the odd-even vehicle rationing scheme by the Delhi government. After a brief hearing on the matter, the apex court issued a notice to Delhi government challenging its decision to enforce odd-even scheme to regulate movements of private vehicles on roads. The government claims this scheme plays a major role in reducing air pollution in the city. The next hearing on the matter is on Friday.

It was said that odd-even rule violates citizens’ rights to practice any profession, trade or any business which violated the right of freely moving anywhere without any questions.

“The odd-even vehicle scheme violates the fundamental rights of residents of Delhi and adjoining states who daily commute in/out of Delhi in their four-wheeled vehicles to do their jobs/business to earn their livelihood and is ultra vires Article 19(1)(g) of the Constitution of India,” the plea said.

The petition was filed three days after the Supreme Court on Monday questioned the rationale behind allowing diesel-run taxis to ply while CNG-run private cars faced restrictions.

“Odd-even is nothing but a political gimmick for self-promotion and advertisements in the smokescreen of curbing pollution,” petitioner Sanjiv Kumar had alleged.

“Autos and taxis will ply more during odd-even. They will make pollution. Why are you stopping cars which are less polluting?” a bench of Justice Arun Mishra and Justice Deepak Gupta had asked the Delhi government counsel.

The odd-even scheme—which started on November 4—would continue till November 15 in Delhi. Vehicles with odd last digit in the registration number are allowed on roads on odd dates and those with an even last digit on even dates, from 8 am to 8 pm, except on Sundays. It also applies to all non-transport four-wheeled vehicles and even those coming to Delhi from other states.

“During odd-even scheme, what is the difference being caused by stopping the use of four-wheelers when various other contributory factors are not taken care of by the Government of NCT of Delhi,” it had said.

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