Refusing to grant immediate relief to taxi operators plying on Rohtang pass, the Supreme Court asked Solicitor General Ranjit Kumar to assist the bench in ascertaining what the NGT has in mind, and the final picture.
The bench of Chief Justice of India, Justices UU Lalit and Banumathi was hearing the petition by Himachal Pradesh Taxi Operators’ Union challenging the National Green Tribunal order limiting the number of vehicles that can ply on Rohtang pass. Currently, not more than 500 vehicles are allowed to run on Rohtang pass.
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During the proceedings, senior advocate Vibha Makhija who was appearing on behalf of taxi operators, argued against the NGT orders to Himachal Pradesh government to operate CNG buses on the Rohtang route. Submitting that the NGT “passes new orders on every hearing”, she further told the court that the state government will enjoy monopoly if it implements the CNG orders. The court, on the other hand, asked the counsel whether her arguments pertaining to monopoly were based on any research, at the same time adding that the environment body had based its orders on the facts that carbon emission from vehicles blacken the snow.
The matter will now be heard on April 18
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