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Air pollution: Will consider lifting ban on construction in NCR, says National Green Tribunal

On November 14, the NGT had expressed concern over the high pollution level, terming it as an "environmental and health emergency". The city should "not gift infected lungs to its children", it had observed.

Reported by: PTI, New Delhi [ Updated: November 17, 2017 7:49 IST ]
A traffic policeman, wearing an anti-pollution mask, mans
A traffic policeman, wearing an anti-pollution mask, mans traffic amid smog and air pollution which continues to be above dangerous level, at Vijay Chowk

The National Green Tribunal (NGT) on Thursday directed the Delhi government to submit data of ambient air quality in the national capital and said it would consider its ban on construction and industrial activity in the National Capital Region (NCR) on that basis. 

A bench headed by NGT Chairperson Justice Swatanter Kumar said that it would take up the matter on Friday and till then its order would be in force. 

During the brief hearing, the AAP government told the bench that water was sprinkled at ITO area according to its direction and PM 2.5 levels had come down as detected by the monitoring centre of the Delhi Pollution Control Committee. 

Some of the lawyers, appearing for builders and industries, requested the tribunal to lift its ban on the ground that air quality in the NCR had improved

The bench refused to pass any order, saying there was no urgency and no builder would be starting construction activity tonight. 

"We will pass the order tomorrow (Friday) after going through the data," it said. 

On November 14, the NGT had expressed concern over the high pollution level, terming it as an "environmental and health emergency". The city should "not gift infected lungs to its children", it had observed.

It had also refused to exempt women and two-wheelers from the Delhi government's odd-even vehicle rationing scheme and directed it to ensure that over 10-year-old diesel vehicles be taken off the roads without delay. 

It had also asked the city government to identify the most polluted areas and sprinkle water, while allowing the non-polluting industries and those manufacturing essential goods to operate in Delhi-NCR. 

The NGT had on November 11 stated that it would not exempt women and two-wheelers from the odd-even vehicle rationing plan to tackle pollution.

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