NHRC raises serious concern over 'tardy progress' towards achieving zero stubble-burning
He said, "We have to rise to the situation as millions are choking due to air pollution and cannot allow it to be so perpetually"
The NHRC on Friday expressed serious concern over the "tardy progress" towards achieving zero stubble burning to reduce air pollution, with its chairperson saying the time has come to "fix responsibility of officers from the top to bottom".
National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) chairperson justice (retd) Arun Kumar Mishra said this while chairing the full Commission follow-up hearing through video conference on the matter of Delhi air pollution, which the rights panel had taken up suo motu last year on the basis of media reports, officials said.
Expressing serious concern over the tardy progress towards achieving zero stubble-burning to reduce air pollution, the NHRC chief said the time has come to "fix responsibility of officers from the top to bottom".
He said, "We have to rise to the situation as millions are choking due to air pollution and cannot allow it to be so perpetually".
"The poor farmers cannot be blamed solely for stubble burning some of them do not have the financial resources to buy or hire machines to remove stubble in a short span between the harvesting of one crop and the sowing of the other," he was quoted as saying in a statement.
The states besides giving subsidies to farmers should also make arrangements to keep them in reserve for those farmers who cannot afford costly equipment. Providing subsidies for the machines cannot be a solution for all, he said.
Likewise, the Commission said the option of in-situ management (mixing crop residue in fields) of the crop waste is also time-consuming and the farmers may not be able to delay their sowing for the next crop, it said.
The Commission has asked the states of Punjab, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh to submit "status reports" on affidavits on the machines supplied to the farmers on a daily basis to achieve the targeted procurement of machines in the next 15 days, the officials said.
They are also expected to submit status reports on machines which are proposed to be reserved in every district for farmers who cannot afford it, they said.
Published: 30 Sep 2023, 12:52 PM