The National Green Tribunal’s (NGT) special circuit bench at Ernakulam has banned diesel vehicles that are more than 10 years old from plying Kerala’s roads. The road users have 30 days’ time to prepare themselves for the Kerala diesel ban after which a fine of INR 10,000 will be imposed on the violators.
The interim order was issued by the bench headed by Justice Swatanter Kumar after hearing a petition filed by Lawyer’s Environmental Awareness Forum (LEAF). Keeping in line with the Supreme Court’s order for the Delhi NCR, the NGT also directed Kerala government not to register any new diesel vehicle which has an engine capacity of more than 2.0-litre.
So basically, the diesel car scenario in Delhi has now been extended to an even larger geographical area. Given that Kerala is an important market for luxury cars, the extension 2.0-litre diesel ban will definitely be opposed by SIAM (Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers) who has been arguing that the displacement limit for the ban is arbitrary.
The petition filed by LEAF alleged that Kochi is one of the highly polluted cities in India and other growing regions of the state too are facing similar conditions. The petition also reportedly demanded that pollution by old diesel vehicles such as buses and trucks should be curtailed.