SC: Air quality commission can invite suggestions from general public, experts

The commission informed the top court that it has permitted the resumption of full-time operation of milk and dairy processing units, medicines, drugs and life-saving equipment industries

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Representative image
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IANS

The Supreme Court on Thursday expressed satisfaction at steps taken by the Commission for Air Quality Management (CAQM) to curb pollution in the capital.

A bench headed by Chief Justice N.V. Ramana and comprising Justices D.Y. Chandrachud and Surya Kant asked the commission to invite suggestions from the general public and experts on finding a permanent solution to curb pollution in Delhi. The top court has scheduled the matter for further hearing in the first week of February.

The commission, in an affidavit, informed the top court that it has permitted the resumption of full-time operation of milk and dairy processing units, medicines, drugs and life-saving equipment industries.

Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, representing the Centre, submitted before the bench that certain industries were permitted to function for 8 hours, but some industries said their nature of industries would require continuous functioning and 8 hours would not be sufficient. Mehta added that these industries have been asked to operate continuously but for 5 days, and not for 7 days. "And we have staggered industries so they don't function on the same days," he submitted.

Mehta contended that construction activities call will be taken on Friday and construction work for hospitals has been permitted. He informed the bench that experts, including scientists from prestigious organisations, are also examining long-term measures to combat the menace of air pollution in the capital, which is a recurring problem.

After hearing arguments in the matter, the top court said the expert group constituted by the commission can look into the suggestions, made by the general public and experts.


Last week, the Commission for Air Quality Management in the National Capital Region and Adjoining Areas (CAQM) told the Supreme Court that an "expert group" has been constituted to finalise an air quality forecast model in terms of the air quality index (AQI).

A special bench of the Supreme Court is hearing a plea by a 17-year-old Delhi student in connection with severe air pollution in the capital. Senior advocate Vikas Singh is representing the petitioner in the top court.

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