After the ordinance of the Commission on Air Quality Management (CAQM) lapsed, an application is moved before the Supreme Court by student environmentalist Aditya Dubey for the Lokur committee to be made operational again.
The Centre established the commission in October last year but nearly five months after its setup, CAQM in National Capital Region and its Adjoining Areas was shut down due to lapsing of the ordinance.
“The ordinance never became an Act. Any ordinance has to be introduced within six weeks of the convening of Parliament. It did not happen so the ordinance has lapsed, hence the commission is dissolved,” Union Environment Secretary said.
The ordinance was introduced due to the increasing air pollution in Delhi-NCR that put in place the commission and provided for up to five years of jail term and Rs one crore fine for violators with immediate effect.
The CAQM replaced the 22-year-old Supreme Court-empowered Environment Pollution (Prevention and Control) Authority (EPCA), and reported to the Centre.
“Direct the Union of India to re-promulgate ‘The Commission for Air Quality Management in National Capital region and Adjoining Areas Ordinance’ and monitor and supervise the working of the said commission or in the alternative vacate the abeyance order dated 26.10.2020 and revive the One Man Monitoring Committee,” reads the application.
“The lapse of the CAQM Ordinance has come as a shock to me and all clean air warriors. We were hoping that the CAQM will work through this year to find a solution to the air pollution problems plaguing Delhi and the northern plains,” said Aditya Dubey.
He added, “however, now that the ordinance has lapsed, we neither have the commission nor the EPCA to monitor the air quality of Delhi. Therefore, we have moved this application praying for the revival of the Lokur Commission which was kept in abeyance by the Hon’ble Supreme Court due to the creation of the new commission. We need a Court-monitored permanent and autonomous body to oversee the critical air pollution crisis being faced by us and I am sure that the Supreme Court will come to the aid of the citizens as it has always done in the past.”