National Green Tribunal pulls up MoRTH over delay in vehicle scrappage policy

by Autocar Pro News Desk , 27 Jul 2020

The National Green Tribunal has questioned the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH) for the delay in issuing guidelines on scrapping of vehicles, reports PTI.

The report states that a bench headed by NGT chairperson Justice Adarsh Kumar Goel said a proper mechanism to set up authorised recycling centres compliant with environmental norms was an urgent need in view of a large number of 'End of Life Vehicles' (ELV). Furthermore, the tribunal noted that the draft guidelines for setting up, authorisation and operation of Vehicles Scrapping Centres have been uploaded on MoRTH website for public comments and have been suitably modified in reference to inputs. However, a formal notification is yet to be issued under the Motor Vehicle Act, 1988 after Cabinet approval.

NGT found MoRTH’s response “very unsatisfactory and lacking in sensitivity.” It further said that there is no tangible explanation for the long delay in issuing the necessary notification, making allowance for the pandemic, the bench “granted further time of two months for issuing requisite notification."

The report says that the tribunal has warned that if no notification is issued before January 6, the next date, the Joint Secretary, MoRTH concerned will have to remain present in person and explain why action be not taken for unnecessary delay.

It further said that the stand of the Delhi Pollution Control Committee shows that clandestine activities are still being found for which vigilance may be strengthened.

The NGT estimates that the number of ''end of life vehicles'' will be over 21 million by 2025, it had directed the government to formulate a standard operating procedure (SOP) for setting up authorised recycling centres to scrap them scientifically. The green body said the scrapping of vehicles in a scientific manner needs to be taken up on organised basis as the current capacity is hardly adequate.

The NGT had taken note of an English newspaper report about the scrap business in Mayapuri and initiated proceedings on its own.

Experts from the Indian automotive industry speaking at the Autocar Professional's webinar on the theme of 'Driving towards a Greener, More Sustainable Auto Industry', held on April 22 – 50th World Earth Day were also of the opinion that the Scrappage policy is vital to charge India's eco-friendly mission. Apex auto industry bodies like SIAM, ACMA and FADA have since long highlighted the need for introduction of an effective vehicle scrappage policy.

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