Centre to SC: Since Dec 3 stubble burning not an issue for pollution

Updated December 14, 2020

social social social social Centre to SC: Since Dec 3 stubble burning not an issue for pollution
New Delhi, Dec 14 (IANS) The Centre on Monday informed the Supreme Court that since December 3, stubble burning is not an issue for air pollution in Delhi. The top court asked the Centre to apprise it of the steps taken so far by the Commission of Air Quality in the National Capital Region and adjoining areas to address air pollution.

Additional Solicitor General Aishwarya Bhati, representing the Centre, submitted before a bench headed by Chief Justice S. A. Bobde that since December 3 stubble burning is not an issue for air pollution and the government will file a detailed affidavit on the steps taken by the commission so far to address air pollution. Apparently stubble burning had stopped after that date.

The bench also comprising Justice A. S. Bopanna and V. Ramasubramanian asked Bhati to file an affidavit elaborating the steps taken so far. Bhati said the affidavit will be filed by Wednesday.

The top court has scheduled the matter for further hearing on Thursday. During the hearing senior advocate Vikas Singh, appearing for a petitioner, submitted that the commission has done nothing so far and the matter at hand is similar to a public health emergency. He added that the commission has 14 members, but they have done nothing, and an affidavit should be filed detailing the actions taken so far to check pollution.

Singh was representing petitioner Aditya Dubey, who has raised the stubble burning issue which contributes majorly to air pollution in the Delhi- NCR region. He added that some concrete steps need to be taken as stubble burning takes place every year.

Senior advocate Siddharth Bhatnagar, representing another petitioner, submitted that stubble burning has increased by five per cent.

Bhati replied "We are readying a comprehensive affidavit."

The top court on November 6, had asked the Centre to ensure there is no smog in the national capital, after it was told that the commission has started functioning that day. The court had noted that air pollution should be dealt with by the executive, which has the power and the resources to address the issue.

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