New Delhi, October 1 (Agency)
Delhi Environment Minister Gopal Rai on Saturday said petrol and diesel will not be made available at petrol pumps in the national capital from October 25 without a PUC (Pollution Control Test) certificate. He said that a meeting of officials of Environment, Transport and Traffic Department was called on 29th September, in which a decision was taken to implement the scheme from 25th October. Rai said at a press conference here, “Vehicle emissions are a major contributor to the rise in pollution levels in Delhi. It is necessary to reduce this, therefore it has been decided that from October 25, petrol, diesel will not be made available at petrol pumps without the PUC certificate of the vehicle. He said that a notification in this regard would be issued soon and by the end of this week it would be clear how the scheme would be implemented. According to the Transport Department of Delhi, as of July 2022, over 17 lakh vehicles, including 13 lakh two-wheelers and three lakh cars, were plying without valid PUC certificates. If a driver is not found to have a valid PUC certificate, he may be punished with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to six months or a fine of Rs 10,000, or with both, as per the Motor Vehicles Act. The minister said that all government departments have also been advised to get the PUC certificates of their vehicles checked. He told reporters, “On March 3, 2022, we had issued a public notice seeking suggestions on the implementation of the ‘No PUC, No Fuel’ step. Suggestions were received on May 2 and many people were in favor of implementing this step, so the government is preparing to implement it from October 25.
Rai also said that the Delhi government will start a 24-hour control room from October 3 to tackle pollution and effectively implement the Revised Graded Response Action Plan (GRAP). Under the revised GRAP, restrictions on polluting activities can be imposed up to three days in advance based on the weather forecast. Rai said that an anti-dust campaign will also be started in Delhi from October 6, under which surprise inspections of construction sites will be done to check the pollution caused by dust. He said that construction sites above 5,000 square meters would have to install one anti-smog gun, construction sites more than 10,000 square meters would have to install two such guns and construction sites more than 20,000 square meters would have to install four such guns to check dust pollution. Anti-smog guns will have to be installed. “If companies do not implement these measures at construction sites, strict action will be taken against them under anti-dust drive,” Rai said.