Gopal Rai urges Centre to ban operation of low-quality diesel buses in NCR


Delhi Environment Minister Gopal Rai on Sunday demanded the Centre impose a strict ban on buses operating with poor-quality diesel in the NCR areas of Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, and Rajasthan. During a surprise inspection at the Kashmere Gate interstate bus terminal, the minister found that all buses registered in Haryana, Rajasthan, and Uttar Pradesh were BS III and BS IV vehicles.

“Vehicular emissions account for a significant portion of Delhi’s air pollution. While buses in Delhi operate only on compressed natural gas and electricity, those belonging to the neighbouring states of Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, and Rajasthan are BS III and BS IV vehicles,” he told reporters here.

Starting from November 1, only electric, CNG, and BS VI-compliant diesel buses will be allowed to operate between Delhi and the cities and towns in Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, and Rajasthan that come within the National Capital Region, or NCR, according to directions issued by the Centre’s Commission for Air Quality Management (CAQM).

“While the CAQM has issued strict directions in this regard, we demand that the Centre implement a complete ban on BS III and BS IV buses being operated in NCR areas of Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, and Rajasthan,” Rai said.

In an effort to reduce pollution levels, the Centre in April 2020 announced that all vehicles sold in India must comply with Bharat Stage-VI (BS-VI) emission standards.

Bharat Stage emission standards set legal limits on the amount of air pollutants, such as carbon monoxide and particulate matter, that vehicles in India can emit. These standards focus on improving emission control, fuel efficiency, and engine design.

Delhi’s air ‘very poor’ for 2nd day in row

New Delhi: Delhi’s air quality was recorded in the “very poor” category for the second consecutive day on Sunday, and relief is unlikely until the end of the month, according to weather-monitoring agencies. The city’s 24-hour average Air Quality Index (AQI) was recorded at 325, worsening from 304 on Saturday and 261 (“poor”) on Friday, according to the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB). It was 256 on Thursday, 243 on Wednesday, and 220 on Tuesday. The AQI was 286 in neighbouring Ghaziabad, 309 in Faridabad, 198 in Gurugram, 281 in Noida, and 344 in Greater Noida.