National Green Tribunal (NGT) has issued notice to the Central Government and Germany’s auto-giant Volkswagen (VW), in a plea seeking ban on sale of the car produced by VW which has been accused of violating emission norms.
The ‘Original Application’ filed by Delhi based school teacher Saloni Ailawadi was heard by a bench headed by its chairperson Justice (Retd) Swatanter Kumar. After hearing advocate Sanjeev Ailawadi who appeared for the applicant, tribunal issued notices to the Ministry of Heavy Industries & Public Enterprises and Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change of the Government of India, Central Pollution Control Board and Volkswagen.
Before issuing the notice, Chairperson questioned the petitioner how the tribunal could be seen to have jurisdiction to stop the sale of the vehicles allegedly violating emission norms.
NGT has given a time of two weeks to the respondents to file their replies and shall next hear the matter on December 23, 2015.
As per Indian Express, the application has referred to Automotive Research Association of India (ARAI)’s recent report which had on November 4, found pollution levels to be more than 9 times the permissible levels in on-road vehicles of 3 VW models compared to laboratory measurements. These vehicles include the VW Jetta, Audi A4 and VW Vento. She has alleged that Volkswagen and its group companies in India were “polluting the environment in blatant disregard to regulations” by selling vehicles which produce nitrogen oxide nine times higher than prescribed limit.
|Original Application No. 509 of 2015
|Saloni Ailawadi v. Union of India & Ors
Vehicles manufactured and sold by Volkswagen have been polluting the environment in blatant and utter disregard to government regulations thereby endangering the lives of millions of people who are being forced to inhale poisonous fumes and suffer extreme misery on account of ill health.
Direct thorough inspection of vehicles being imported and sold by Volkswagen in India after their import and to disallow any further sale of such vehicles until and unless it is established that the same are not in contravene of statutory and prescribed norms as applicable in India.
3,20,000 VW Cars to be recalled
Auto Car reported yesterday that VW India is bracing itself to initiate a recall of over 3,20,000 of its cars affected by the diesel emissions scandal. The affected cars include all cars powered by the EA189 diesel engine family and this is around 2,10,000 VWs, around 80,000 Skodas and over 30,000 Audis.
VW India has admitted to the Ministry of Transport that around 3,14,000 cars were carrying the ‘defeat devices’ or software that was designed to allow cars to cheat on emission tests. That number is likely to rise as both VW and Skoda have continued to sell cars in India with the software in question.
Read order here.
Image from here.