CHENNAI: The Southern Bench of the National Green Tribunal (NGT) on Friday passed an interim order, restraining the Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) from purchasing over 1,500 new diesel vehicles.
Hearing a petition filed by Vinay Shivanand Naik, a resident of Bengaluru, the bench, comprising Justice MS Nambiar and expert member PS Rao, said the KSRTC should take the tribunal into confidence before finalising the purchase of the new buses.
The petitioner’s counsel argued that in the wake of the Dellhi crisis, it is imperative for Bengaluru to take precautionary measures before the situation slips out of the hand. “There is already a demand for converting the entire fleet of vehicles belonging to the Bengaluru Metropolitan Transport Corporation (BMTC) from diesel to CNG. The Karnataka High Court has also passed an interim order restraining the BMTC from purchasing diesel vehicles. In such a situation, how can KSRTC go for such a purchase,” the counsel questioned.
Meanwhile, the Karnataka government counsel told the court that, unlike BMTC, the KSRTC operates inter-state services and without sufficient availability of CNG filling stations it would be difficult to operate.
The Karnataka State Pollution Control Board (KSPCB) has filed a detailed reply highlighting that the GAIL had agreed to set up more CNG filling stations in the city. At the 14th coordination committee meeting held on November 2 in respect of control of air and noise pollution in Bengaluru, Parthagm Jana of GAIL has made a presentation regarding the status of availability of CNG and the status of gas distribution.