Government will soon come out with an integrated policy to scrap commercial vehicles that are over 10-year old to check rising pollution but there is no immediate plan to ban trucks and buses above 15 years, Union Minister Nitin Gadkari said today. The policy envisages tax exemptions and discounts totalling up to Rs. 2.5 lakh on vehicles purchased for about Rs. 10 lakh at the time of new purchase.
"We will form such a policy that more than 10-year-old vehicles will be scrapped. The cost of vehicle will be valued at 10 to 15 per cent of original cost. If vehicle cost is Rs. 10 lakh, scrap will be 10 per cent of it," Mr Gadkari told reporters on the sidelines of a CII event.
Can you believe it; India has 13 of the world's 20 most polluted cities, as reported by the World Health Organization (WHO) last year. On the last Diwali night air pollution in Delhi reached 40 times the limit recommended by the WHO.
Weak coordination and enforcement have limped action to clean India's cities and tackle a health calamity that causes more than 6 lakh premature deaths every year. Diesel emissions, construction dust and the burning of crop stubble in farms is the prime reason for over dose of air pollution in metro cities like Delhi.
Indian government has announced to ban trucks and buses more than 15 years old to restrain pollution levels. Commercial trucks, which account for more than half of India's vehicle emissions, are also included. The ban will come into effect in April and the Govt. will declare more details in the next two weeks.
New car sales are increasing in India. Taxes on cars and parking charges should be raised to curtail usage, and public transport should be expanded, opine experts. Last week India said it would require vehicles to abide by stricter emissions standards by 2019, three years ahead of the previous deadline.