NCR Air Pollution: SC Allows Construction Activity Of Hospitals In Delhi

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The Supreme Court on Friday allowed the Delhi government to go ahead with construction activities of hospitals in the city and expressed satisfaction over fresh steps taken by the Commission for Air Quality Management in Delhi-NCR for enforcement of orders to tackle air pollution.

A Bench of Chief Justice NV Ramana Justices DY Chandrachud and Surya Kant approving the measures proposed by the Commission directed the Centre and Delhi government to comply with Commission’s December 2 orders.

“We have taken into consideration the directions proposed. We direct Centre and NCT of Delhi to implement the orders of December 2 and we keep the matter pending and will hear it on next Friday,” the Bench stated in its order.

The Delhi government today urged the apex court to allow construction activities of hospitals in the city adding to prepare and counter the possible Covid-19 third wave, it had started to revamp its hospital infrastructure and started construction of seven new hospitals, but due to the construction ban, work has stopped.

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In addition to that, work is being carried out in 19 government hospitals to provide better health infrastructure in the national capital for the benefit of patients, Delhi government told the Bench requesting that construction work at hospitals be exempted from the ban.

The construction activities in Delhi were banned after air quality raised to alarming levels in the city and its adjoining areas. On November 22, the Delhi government resumed the construction activities in view of the improved air quality, but the apex court revived the ban on November 24 in Delhi and the National Capital Region (NCR).

Besides, the State of Uttar Pradesh, represented by senior advocate Ranjit Kumar, took objection to the decision to close industries saying that it will impact the working of sugarcane and milk industries. The Commission’s decision to allow industries to work only eight hours will affect the sugarcane industry, Kumar said.

He added that Uttar Pradesh is in the downward wind and the air is mostly coming from Pakistan. To this, the Chief Justice said: “So you want the banning of industries in Pakistan?”

The top court has been hearing a plea seeking emergency steps to control the worsening air quality situation in the national capital region.

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