File photo: Stubble burning(HT File Photo)
File photo: Stubble burning(HT File Photo)

SC seeks concrete measures from Centre on stubble burning

  • The Court was hearing a PIL which alleged that the spike in pollution caused due to stubble burning could increase health risks caused by Covid-19.
By Abraham Thomas, New Delhi
UPDATED ON JAN 12, 2021 12:14 AM IST

The Supreme Court on Monday asked the recently-constituted Commission for Air Quality Management in Delhi and Adjoining areas to submit an action plan to curb stubble burning this year.

Finding the problem to repeat itself every year with no solution still in sight, a three-judge bench comprising Chief Justice of India (CJI) SA Bobde, Justices AS Bopanna and V Ramasubramanian told Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, “You come back with concrete measures being taken about stubble burning.”

The Court was hearing a public interest litigation (PIL) filed by two young environmental activists led by Aditya Dubey. The PIL alleged that the spike in pollution caused due to stubble burning could increase health risks caused by Covid-19 leading to more deaths.

Senior advocate Vikas Singh appearing for the petitioners said, “Stubble burning problem is over for last year (2020) but some concrete steps must be taken by the Commission.”

Also read: China pulls back 10,000 troops from Ladakh theatre

Singh told the Court that a detailed affidavit filed last month by the Centre detailed the work done by the Commission for Air Quality Management (CAQM) since its formation by way of an Ordinance on October 28, 2020. “The affidavit makes no mention about the steps taken to curb stubble burning,” he added.

On December 17, when the case was last heard, the CJI-headed bench had remarked, “We are not very satisfied” about the work done by the Commission. In October 2020, the Court had even formed a one-man committee headed by former Supreme Court judge, Justice Madan Lokur to report on farm fires after air pollution in Delhi deteriorated. To put in place a permanent mechanism against air pollution, the Centre issued an Ordinance forming the said Commission.

The Commission, drawing members from Central ministries and representatives from neighbouring states, was expected to provide a consolidated and conjoint approach which included monitoring, tackling and research in air pollution. The body was even tasked with the responsibility of coordinating measures taken by Delhi’s neighbouring states to prevent factors causing air pollution. Stubble burning was one of the major causes of air pollution under consideration of the Commission’s radar.

The affidavit filed jointly by the Centre and the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) disclosed about 50 teams being formed to monitor pollution on the ground. As per data furnished by the Commission, active farm fires in Punjab have been 44 per cent higher in 2020 (September 21-November 25) with 76,590 stubble fires as compared to same period in 2019 with 52,991 fires. Correspondingly, farm fires in Haryana saw a decline of 25 per cent over last year. In 2020, the state reported 5,000 stubble burning incidents compared to 6,652 in 2019.

The Commission relied on the Ambient Air Quality Standards to show that in 2019, Delhi had 121 days and 63 days of ambient air quality for PM 2.5 and PM 10 levels as compared to 2018 when the corresponding figures were 98 days and 48 days.

The affidavit further disclosed that on November 27 last year, the Commission held deliberations with Indian Agricultural Research Institute (IARI) and state governments of Punjab and Haryana on various measures to mitigate the issue of paddy crop burning. Scientists working in the field of agriculture proposed the use of PUSA-decomposer for microbial disintegration of agricultural stubble that could be an alternative to stubble burning. The Commission met various NGOs and civil society groups on this aspect, the deliberations of which are expected to come up in the subsequent affidavit to be filed by the Centre.

SHARE THIS ARTICLE ON
app
Close
Union Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar on Friday said the protest has lost its sanctity.
Union Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar on Friday said the protest has lost its sanctity.

'Sanctity lost': 5 things Narendra Singh Tomar said on farmers' protest

By hindustantimes.com | Edited by Poulomi Ghosh
PUBLISHED ON JAN 22, 2021 10:57 PM IST
Though the minister is hopeful of a resolution, he accused the protest of losing its sight on Friday after the 11th meeting ended in a stalemate
Close
A nurse administers the COVID-19 vaccine to a frontline worker during a vaccination drive in Kolkata. (ANI PHOTO).
A nurse administers the COVID-19 vaccine to a frontline worker during a vaccination drive in Kolkata. (ANI PHOTO).

Bengal ramps up Covid-19 vaccination drive as state adds 406 new infections

PUBLISHED ON JAN 22, 2021 10:51 PM IST
  • The state received its first consignment of Covaxin doses on Friday. Earlier Bengal had received two consignments of Covishield vaccine, manufactured by the Serum Institute of India.
Close
A health official holds a box containing Covishield vaccine doses in Amritsar.(PTI)
A health official holds a box containing Covishield vaccine doses in Amritsar.(PTI)

Co-win app for vaccination gets new features: All you need to know

Written by Poulomi Ghosh
PUBLISHED ON JAN 22, 2021 10:38 PM IST
Change in site location, provisional certificate after one dose are some of the new features added to Co-Win app.
Close
That beneficiary names are missing from the portal was detected after the government on Tuesday tweaked the CoWIN app to allow on-the-spot administration of shots to those already enrolled for vaccination on the portal. (ANI PHOTO) (Image used for representation).(ANI)
That beneficiary names are missing from the portal was detected after the government on Tuesday tweaked the CoWIN app to allow on-the-spot administration of shots to those already enrolled for vaccination on the portal. (ANI PHOTO) (Image used for representation).(ANI)

Duplication, missing names of health workers on CoWIN add to concerns in Bihar

By Ruchir Kumar | Edited by Sohini Sarkar
PUBLISHED ON JAN 22, 2021 10:29 PM IST
  • The Patna Medical College Hospital (PMCH) claimed there was duplication in names of its HCWs generated through the portal on Thursday.
Close
The elephant running around in pain. (Videograb)
The elephant running around in pain. (Videograb)

Elephant's ears torched in Tamil Nadu's Nilgiris, it dies; 2 arrested

By Divya Chandrababu
PUBLISHED ON JAN 22, 2021 10:17 PM IST
Prasath, 36, and Raymond, 28, have been booked for offences under the Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972.
Close
Chief Election Commissioner Sunil Arora interacts with the media at the Oberoi Grand in Kolkata on Friday. (Samir Jana/HT PHOTO).
Chief Election Commissioner Sunil Arora interacts with the media at the Oberoi Grand in Kolkata on Friday. (Samir Jana/HT PHOTO).

‘Zero tolerance for misuse of money and muscle power’: EC in poll-bound Bengal

By HT Correspondent | Edited by Sohini Sarkar
PUBLISHED ON JAN 22, 2021 10:06 PM IST
  • The ECI’s full bench comprising the CEC and election commissioners Sushil Chandra and Rajiv Kumar were in West Bengal on a two-day visit to take stock of the poll preparedness and law and order situation ahead of the crucial assembly polls scheduled to be held this year.
Close
Educational institutions in the UT were shut since March last year in the view of Covid-19 pandemic.(HT Photo)
Educational institutions in the UT were shut since March last year in the view of Covid-19 pandemic.(HT Photo)

Schools in J-K to reopen on Feb 1 after nearly 11 months: All you need to know

Written by Prashasti Singh, New Delhi
UPDATED ON JAN 22, 2021 10:04 PM IST
Classes for students of standard 9 to 12 will resume in summer zone areas of the Jammu division from February 1, an order issued by the education department said, adding that classes for students from standard 1 to 8 will resume from February 8.
Close
Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro.(Reuters)
Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro.(Reuters)

'Namaskar': Brazil's Bolsonaro thanks 'great partner' India, PM Modi for vaccine

By hindustantimes.com | Edited by Deepali Sharma, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
PUBLISHED ON JAN 22, 2021 09:59 PM IST
The biggest nation of South America has been facing vaccine shortage and was awaiting the arrival of two million doses of the coronavirus vaccines from India.
Close
Shiromani Akali Dal president Sukhbir Singh Badal alleged that the Centre had struck at the DSGMC because it was at the forefront in providing aid to the farm movement.(HT_PRINT)
Shiromani Akali Dal president Sukhbir Singh Badal alleged that the Centre had struck at the DSGMC because it was at the forefront in providing aid to the farm movement.(HT_PRINT)

Those supporting farmer protests being vilified: Sukhbir Singh Badal

PTI, New Delhi
PUBLISHED ON JAN 22, 2021 09:57 PM IST
  • Sukhbir Singh Badal accused the Centre of resorting to arm-twisting tactics to "intimidate" all those who were supporting the farmers' agitation. Alleging that an FIR was lodged against Manjinder Singh Sirsa as he was providing langar service and other humanitarian aid to the farmers' agitation.
Close
Priests place vials of Covid-19 coronavirus vaccine in front of an idol of Brahma Swaroop Yogiji Maharaj before the start of a vaccination drive at the BAPS Yogiji Maharaj Hospital in Ahmedabad.(AFP)
Priests place vials of Covid-19 coronavirus vaccine in front of an idol of Brahma Swaroop Yogiji Maharaj before the start of a vaccination drive at the BAPS Yogiji Maharaj Hospital in Ahmedabad.(AFP)

80% Indians willing to get vaccines, highest in world; Russians most reluctant

Written by Poulomi Ghosh
UPDATED ON JAN 22, 2021 10:22 PM IST
Among the states, Karnataka has the highest number of beneficiaries as it has inoculated 1,82,503 beneficiaries so far. Odisha stands second with 1,21,004 vaccine beneficiaries.
Close
In daily Covid-19 positive cases, Ernakulam district topped with 1018 infections, health ministry data shows. (HT PHOTO).
In daily Covid-19 positive cases, Ernakulam district topped with 1018 infections, health ministry data shows. (HT PHOTO).

Kerala logs another Covid-19 surge with 6753 new infections, TPR rises to 11.63%

By HT Correspondent | Edited by Sohini Sarkar
UPDATED ON JAN 22, 2021 09:30 PM IST
  • A person who had returned from the UK two weeks back in north Kerala’s Kannur has been detected with the modified strain of the virus. With this, the total number of modified virus cases has gone up to 10 in the state.
Close
Punjab CM Captain Amarinder Singh(ANI)
Punjab CM Captain Amarinder Singh(ANI)

Punjab CM announces govt jobs to kin of farmers who died during protest

By hindustantimes.com | Edited by Deepali Sharma, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
PUBLISHED ON JAN 22, 2021 09:26 PM IST
The 11th round of talks scheduled between farmers' union and government on Friday resulted in a stalemate.
Close
Mulayam Singh Yadav(HT Photo )
Mulayam Singh Yadav(HT Photo )

Mulayam Singh’s biopic set for release in Uttar Pradesh on January 29

PUBLISHED ON JAN 22, 2021 09:24 PM IST
The movie will also be released on OTT platforms at a later stage.
Close
India will celebrate its 72nd Republic Day on January 26 next year, honouring the historic date when the country completed its transition towards becoming an independent republic(Sonu Mehta/HT PHOTO)
India will celebrate its 72nd Republic Day on January 26 next year, honouring the historic date when the country completed its transition towards becoming an independent republic(Sonu Mehta/HT PHOTO)

Indian Navy's R-Day tableau to showcase its stellar role in 1971 Indo-Pak war

ANI, New Delhi
PUBLISHED ON JAN 22, 2021 09:17 PM IST
  • As per a statement issued by the Indian Navy, the theme of the tableau for the 2021 Republic Day Parade is titled 'Indian Navy Combat Ready, Credible and Cohesive'. The forward section of the tableau will showcase the attack on Karachi harbour by missile boats.
Close
Prime Minister Narendra Modi addresses during the 18th Convocation of Tezpur University through video conferencing in New Delhi on Friday. (ANI Photo)
Prime Minister Narendra Modi addresses during the 18th Convocation of Tezpur University through video conferencing in New Delhi on Friday. (ANI Photo)

PM to launch programme to allot 'patta' to over a lakh in Assam tomorrow

By hindustantimes.com | Edited by Arpan Rai
PUBLISHED ON JAN 22, 2021 09:06 PM IST
"Tomorrow morning I would be among the people of Assam. At a programme in Sivasagar, 1.06 lakh land pattas/allotment certificates will be distributed. We are committed to doing everything possible to preserve the rights and unique culture of the great state of Assam," PM Modi tweeted on Friday.
Close
SHARE
Story Saved
OPEN APP