Panaji: With the National Green Tribunal (NGT) banning diesel vehicles older than ten years in Delhi, Union Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari has said the country's economic situation and other aspects also need to be taken into account while implementing such decisions.
"In Delhi, the National Green Tribunal has pronounced an order about the diesel vehicles. We respect the judgement, we are already committed towards a pollution-free India, but at the same time we have to think about the economic situation of our country," he said last evening while addressing a conference here of transport ministers from South Indian states.
"We have to consider the poverty in our country and also per capita income. And in such a situation we have to consider all the points. If you go by only one side, it will not be justified. For all these debatable issues, I need your opinion and then we will take the decision," he said.
"We have to make country accidents-free, bring automobile industry up to the international standards and at the same time consider the economic situation. The country needs to work out solution for these problems," the minister said.
"We have to see whether we can convert the existing diesel buses into electrical ones and then they can be used to ferry school students," Gadkari said.
The NGT had on Tuesday held that all diesel vehicles which are more than 10 years old will not be permitted to ply in Delhi.
Noting that diesel is prime source of air pollution in Delhi, the Tribunal had said the situation is so alarming that people have been even advised to leave Delhi due to adverse effects on health.