As per the Apex Court, “health of the people is far far more important than the commercial interest of automobile manufacturers”.
In a step towards prevention of further environmental damage and human health hazard, the Supreme Court has come down heavily on vehicle Manufacturing companies. The SC on Wednesday banned the sale of Bharat Stage III vehicles from April 1, rejecting the plea of the automobile makers. They wanted the court to give them more time to dispose of the pre-BS IV vehicles in stock.
What is BS IV (Bharat Stage IV)
BS IV – certified automobile emission norms that control the level of pollutants emitted from vehicles. In a move, twice earlier, the government had banned manufacture and sale of vehicles that did not comply with these emission norms. However, vehicle manufacturers continued producing such vehicles despite the ban.
The government notification on BS-IV said companies could not manufacture such vehicles from April without elaborating on the fate of unsold vehicles manufactured up to March 31. BS-IV vehicles emit less pollutants than those certified BS-III. Companies like Bajaj Auto and Daimler said sale or registration of non-BS-IV vehicles should not be allowed from April 1st.
The court order, for which the reasons will be supplied on a later date, further stated that “all the vehicle registering authorities under the Motor Vehicles Act are prohibited from registering such vehicles on and from 1st April 2017 that do not meet BS-IV emission standards, except on proof that such a vehicle has already been sold on or before 31st March 2017”.
The Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM) had their plea for a year’s extension on the ban put forward by Senior Advocate A. M. Singhvi. The idea being that they would be able to dispose-off the bulk stock of BS III vehicles within seven to eight months.
The fate of 41 automobile firms who had manufactured 130 million BS III vehicles from 2010 to March 2017 and their stock at present of 824,000 lies in limbo.
Automobile firms stated that it was not possible for them to convert their current stock of BS III compliant vehicles to BS IV compliant.
According to The Environment Pollution Control Authority (EPCA), the vehicle manufacturing companies had the latest technology for a long time and should have scaled down the production of BS III vehicles.
Information Credit: Business Standard