NEW DELHI: Curbs on the movement of BS-III petrol and BS-IV diesel vehicles in the national capital will remain in place till November 13, officials said after a meeting on Thursday. The government’s transport department held a review meeting to discuss if the curbs should continue following an improvement in the national capital’s Air Quality Index (AQI) in the last few days.
“The curb imposed on BS-III and IV vehicles (four-wheelers) will continue till November 13 as the air pollution in the city is still in the ‘poor zone’ and the forecast suggest it will further deteriorate to ‘very poor’ category,” a senior government official said.
The official added that a composite view of the situation will be taken when air quality improves.
“We will analyse the situation closely and decide in the next few days, following discussion with officials from the environment department,” a department official said.
The Delhi government on Monday ordered the ban on plying of privately owned BS-III petrol and BS-IV diesel four-wheelers (light motor vehicles (LMVs) in the city under the Stage-3 measures of the Graded Response Action Plan (GRAP) currently implemented in Delhi-NCR.
However, the ban is not applicable to BS-III and IV two-wheelers and commercial vehicles.
Currently, the department has close to 3,00,000 diesel and 2,00,000 petrol-powered cars registered with it which are following the old emission norms of BS-III and IV. The transport department said the vehicles found plying in violation of the rule will be prosecuted under the Motor Vehicles Act, which could invite a fine of Rs 20,000.
According to the officials, the transport department has also deployed around 130 teams along with the Delhi Traffic Police across the city to ensure proper implementation of the ban. Vehicles deployed for emergency services and government and election-related work do not come under the ban purview.
The transport department also specified that there will be no ban on entry of trucks into Delhi and Delhi-registered diesel-operated medium goods and heavy goods vehicles.
The 24-hour average AQI in the national capital stood at 295 on Thursday. It was 260 on Wednesday, 372 on Tuesday, 354 on Monday, 339 on Sunday and 381 on Saturday. With the air pollution levels in the national capital coming down to the “poor” category from “very poor”, the Commission for Air Quality Management (CAQM) said it will review the situation on Friday.