It is a debatable issue considering the poor in the country
GN Bureau | April 10, 2015
Union transport minister Nitin Gadkari feels that the country's economic situation and other aspects also need to be taken into account while implementing decisions of National Green Tribunal on banning diesel vehicles older than ten years in Delhi.
"In Delhi, the National Green Tribunal has pronounced an order about the diesel vehicles. We respect the judgement, we are already committed towards a pollution-free India, but at the same time we have to think about the economic situation of our country," he said on Thursday evening while addressing a conference here of transport ministers from South Indian states in Panaji, Goa.
"We have to consider the poverty in our country and also per capita income. And in such a situation we have to consider all the points. If you go by only one side, it will not be justified. For all these debatable issues, I need your opinion and then we will take the decision," he said.
"We have to see whether we can convert the existing diesel buses into electrical ones and then they can be used to ferry school students," Gadkari said. The NGT had on Tuesday held that diesel is the prime source of air pollution in Delhi. the tribunal had said the situation is so alarming that people have been even advised to leave Delhi due to adverse effects on health.
Gadkari’s point is well taken. From just 4 percent of new car sales in 2000, diesel cars are now half of new car sales. In the total diesel use the share of car use (private cars and taxis) is up 22.09 percent. Private cars alone use 13.15 percent, which is higher than buses at 9.55 percent, agriculture at 13 percent, railways at 3.24 percent and mobile towers at 1.54 percent. Cars are the second highest user after diesel trucks at 28.25 percent.
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