Apex Court’s observation in the wake of air pollution in Delhi
New Delhi, Nov. 29 (Delhi Crown): In a key observation, the Supreme Court on Monday sought the Centre Government’s response on the fact whether the ongoing Central Vista project was a major cause of air pollution in the national capital.
The “Central Vista Redevelopment Project” refers to the ongoing redevelopment to revamp the Central Vista, India’s central administrative area located near Raisina Hill in New Delhi.
While hearing a matter related to the air quality crisis in Delhi, the Supreme Court on Monday sought the response of the Centre to the allegation that construction works for the Central Vista was a major cause of air pollution.
Appearing for the petitioner, Senior Advocate Vikas Singh submitted before a bench led by the Chief Justice of India N.V. Ramana that the Central Vista works were “going on despite the ban” imposed by the Supreme Court on construction activities in Delhi-NCR to reduce air pollution.
“Construction work is banned but Central vista work is going full swing. According to us that is not an essential activity. Central vista work, right under the nose of Supreme Court, is going on in full swing,” Singh submitted.
“Larger constructions contribute more. Central vista is going on unabated. Central vista can’t be more important that lives of people. I can show you videos,” he added.
Addressing Singh, the CJI remarked – “Now we’re struggling how to control pollution whether it is Central Vista, or pollution industries etc. Don’t think we don’t know anything. We also know. We’ll ask Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, he’ll have to explain.”
The CJI further added – “Don’t flag certain issues and focus on those issue so the issue is diverted. If Mehta has to answer he’ll have to answer. We’re not allowing Mehta to go away. If you’re saying Central Vista alright we’ll ask him.”
The bench, also comprising Justice DY Chandrachud and Justice Surya Kant, asked the Solicitor General of India Tushar Mehta to get instructions from the Central Government regarding the submissions of Singh.
The order passed by the bench stated: “Vikas Singh has raised certain issues with regard to construction activities being carried out in the National Capital Territory of Delhi, which according to him, is the major cause of air pollution in Delhi. In view of the above, Tushar Mehta is directed to file response to the said submission made by Vikas Singh, learned Senior counsel and get instructions in this behalf on the next date of hearing.”