Delhi air pollution evidence of NGT's ‘emasculation': Jairam Ramesh – Hindustan Times

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Congress leader Jairam Ramesh on Friday lamented what he said was ‘emasculation’ of the National Green Tribunal (NGT), with his strong assertion coming at a time when Delhi and its neighbouring areas are battling severe air pollution that has led to closure of schools in the national capital, and imposition of curbs.
“In January 2014, an expert Steering Committee on Air Pollution and Health Related issues was set up and submitted its report in 2015. Since then the weakness in our enforcement machinery of both the law and the standards along with the emasculation of the National Green Tribunal have become painfully evident,” Ramesh wrote on X (formerly Twitter).
With his post, the head of Congress’ media department shared a press release from November 18, 2009 – the grand old party was in Centre at the time – notifying the revised National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS).
The Rajya Sabha MP further stressed that both the Air Pollution Act, 1981, and the NAAQS must undergo ‘total revamp.’
“The National Clean Air Programme is chugging along without having any marked impacts. Air pollution hits the headlines mostly in November when the nation’s capital chokes. But it is a daily agony across the country all round the year,” Ramesh noted.
As mentioned by the Congress member, these were introduced in April 1994 and revised in October 1998. The November 2009 revision was effected after an IIT Kanpur-led review; the standards cover 12 pollutants considered ‘very detrimental’ to public health.

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