The rising level of pollution in India is resulting in a few drastic steps. The Indian government has already announced plans for making Indian cars fossil-fuel free by 2030. To bring immediate changes, Supreme Court of India has issued a new direction.
No pollution certificate – No insurance
The highest court in India has directed insurance companies not to renew insurance of the vehicles that do not have Pollution Under Control (PUC) certificate. A bench headed by Justice Madan B Lokur has also directed the Ministry of Transport and Highways to make sure that all the refilling stations in the National Capital Region (NCR) have PUC issuing centres.
The court has granted four weeks of time to the centre to ensure that there are enough functional PUC centres in the Delhi-NCR to make the new implementation easier. The decision comes after the court has considered suggestion given by Environment Pollution Control Authority (EPCA). Interestingly, the decision was passed during a hearing of Public Interest Litigation (PIL) filed by MC Mehta in 1985 with various aspects of pollution.
What does it mean?
It will mean that all the vehicles plying in Delhi-NCR must get pollution PUC certificate before they can renew the insurance from this year. The Delhi-NCR region has already imposed a ban on the vehicles that are 15 years and older to curb pollution. The new ruling will further tighten the noose around polluting vehicles in the region.
However, there are many malpractices done in such centres and EPCA had also suggested limiting the number of PUC centres to monitor them in a better way. The centre has opposed the suggestion.
The solicitor, Ranjit Kumar has said that the government is planning to introduce a new way through which the owner of the vehicles will be reminded of the out of date certificates. The vehicle owners will be sent text messages telling them that they are under supervision when their certificates expire or are about to expire.
It may mean that the vehicle owners will have to furnish the PUC certificate in the Delhi-NCR area before they could renew the car insurance physically or online.