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HT Correspondent , Hindustan Times
Chandigarh, July 29, 2013
 In its suggestions for curbing the effect of pollution on the Golden Temple, the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) on Monday submitted before the Punjab and Haryana high court that the area around Harmandar Sahib should be declared a no-vehicle zone and the entry of heavy vehicles should be banned inside the walled city.

In its reply submitted before the court headed by chief justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul, the SGPC also proposed to give subsidy on liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) for gurdwara langar so that there is less use of wood. The suggestions also include banning of diesel, kerosene oil and petrol-operated autorickshaws in the area and the use of compressed natural gas (CNG) or battery-operated rickshaws for the purpose. Smoke-control devices should be installed at the cremation grounds and factories in the city, it was submitted.

The court was informed that multi-storeyed parking for heavy vehicles such as trucks, buses, tempos, tractors etc. should be constructed at Ghee Mandi, Buraj Akali Phula Singh near Guru Nanak Bhawan, old Sabzi Mandi near Hall gate and Sakatri Bagh on the Tarn Taran road.

The use of generators and wood/coal-operated ovens and tandoors of hotels around Harmandar Sahib should be stopped, the area of the green belt should be increased in the city and encroachments from roads and footpaths leading to the shrine should be removed, it was submitted. More toilets should be constructed for public convenience and hotels and houses in the area should be provided non-stop electricity to reduce the use of diesel generators.

The state government would submit its reply in the case on the next date of hearing, September 10.