‘No vehicular, industrial pollution in Chandigarh’

UT Administration replies to PIL seeking CNG, LPG be made mandatory for public vehicles

In response to a public interest litigation (PIL) seeking directions to make mandatory use of CNG or LPG for public vehicles in Punjab, Haryana and Chandigarh, the Chandigarh Administration has said that there is no vehicular or industrial pollution in the city.

Terming the PIL filed by Ludhiana-resident Jatinder Moudgill as misconceived, the Administration has stated that it is keen and willing to introduce alternative mode of fuel for public vehicles: To make CNG available in Chandigarh, however, a dedicated supply line is required to be laid by the Government of India, which is likely to take up to five years. The infrastructure of supply of CNG is to be provided by the Ministry of Petroleum and thus, without availability of sufficient supply of CNG, it is not feasible to restrict vehicles to use CNG only, the Administration has added.

Advocate Anupam Gupta, senior standing counsel for the UT Administration, stated: "Till a supply line for CNG is laid down and it is made available, it is not feasible to restrict vehicles from using diesel or petrol."

Calling the PIL and the comparison of Chandigarh with cities like Ludhiana and Delhi by the petitioner as misplaced, the reply of the Administration reads: "While no part of the country can afford to relax vigil in the matter of ecology and environmental pollution, any attempt to equate Chandigarh with other cities or regions in this regard is neither supported by any expert study or analysis of the specific situation obtaining in Chandigarh nor vindicated by the actual position on the ground."

The petition is based on the facile assumption that Chandigarh faces the same or similar problem of air pollution caused by vehicles as was, or is being, faced in Delhi or in other cities such as Ludhiana in the State of Punjab, the Administration has submitted.

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