Vehicles older than 15 years old must be cancelled by the National Green Tribunal within six months. The entire state, including Kolkata and Howrah, has been ordered to follow the directive. Additionally, in the case of public transportation, it has been mandated to cancel vehicles below BS-IV in order to reduce pollution. Only BS-4 and BS-6 cars will operate in Kolkata and Howrah in the near future, according to the Green Tribunal. Additionally, the Green Tribunal ordered the construction of “a sound limiter to prevent noise pollution in the case of playing the mic.” The Pollution Control Board has been given the go-ahead to create an action plan in consultation with the police in that situation.
It is to be noted that the green tribunal had ordered the closure of old commercial vehicles even before this. The Department of Transport has also started the process of gradually implementing it. Letters are being sent to owners of ‘aged’ cars to cancel them. But the work has not yet started. As a result, the officials of the transport department are worried about how this directive of the Green Tribunal can be implemented quickly. Private car owners are also worried. Because until now, only commercial vehicles were supposed to be cancelled, but now 15-year-old private cars are also going to be affected.
Environmental activist Subhash Dutta said about the order of the Green Tribunal, the Calcutta High Court had given this order in the wake of a case filed by him in 2008. 14 years have passed. This time, there were two issues in the judgment of the Green Tribunal. A fixed time limit has been fixed. And the High Court’s order was only in the case of commercial vehicles, but this time, along with commercial vehicles, 15-year-old private vehicles have also been ordered to be cancelled. At the same time, to reduce pollution, it has been informed that the use of CNG or electric vehicles should be increased as much as possible instead of diesel vehicles.
According to the Transport Department, Kolkata and Howrah alone have close to 10 lakh 15-year-old private and commercial vehicles. The officials of the office are worried about how much it is possible to cancel that car in just six months. Because the process of sending letters to car owners has started for a month. Only 20-25 thousand letters were received. They think that it is very difficult to complete the huge activities in this short time. With this directive of the Green Tribunal, however, the traders involved in the transport industry are in trouble. According to the owners, the business has become unprofitable. After that, if the old car is scrapped, no one will bring the new car. The same tone is echoed by taxi owners. Because most of the taxis in the city are over 15 years old. As a result, if they are all cancelled, then there will be no more taxis.