'Can't fire bullets from our shoulders': SC pulls up Delhi govt over reopening schools amid rising air pollution

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'Can't fire bullets from our shoulders': SC pulls up Delhi govt over reopening schools amid rising air pollution
© Provided by Jagran English

New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: The Supreme Court on Thursday pulled up the Arvind Kejriwal-led Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) government for reopening schools in Delhi in the backdrop of severe air pollution in the national capital region (NCR). The court also slammed the Kejriwal government over its ‘Red Light On, Gaadi Off’ campaign to curb vehicular pollution, saying it was nothing but a popular slogan.

“Poor young boys standing in the middle of the road with banners, who is taking care of their health? Again, we’ve to say, other than the popularity slogan, what else is it,” the court said, as reported by news agency PTI.

A three-judge bench – which included Chief Justice NV Ramana, Justice DY Chandrachud and Justice Surya Kant – also slammed the Centre for its “failure” to come up with a serious plan for the implementation of air pollution control measures.

Posting the matter for Friday, the court gave a 24-hour deadline to the Centre and the Delhi government to come up with a serious plan for the implementation of air pollution control measures.

“We are serious about industrial and vehicular pollution. you cannot fire bullets from our shoulders, you have to take steps. Why are schools open,” the apex court remarked, as reported by news agency ANI. “We feel there is nothing happening, in spite of air pollution levels rising”.

The Delhi government had reopened the schools on November 29 for all the classes despite the increasing air pollution level. It had also initiated the ‘Red Light On, Gaadi Off’ campaign from October 21 to November 15, saying that even if 10 lakh vehicles in the city joined the campaign, the PM10 levels would fall by 1.5 tonnes and PM2.5 by 0.4 tonnes in a year.

Under the initiative, government officials from the transport department, volunteers and traffic police urge commuters to switch off their vehicles while waiting for the traffic light to turn green. The government then extended the campaign till November 30.

With inputs from PTI, ANI

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