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Act on your own plan to decongest Delhi traffic: Supreme Court

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Supreme Court of India

New Delhi, Feb 6: The Supreme Court on Tuesday rapped Arvind Kejriwal-led Delhi government and the police for not acting on their own action plan for decongesting traffic in the national capital, stating they have taken up only five of the 77 sites identified by the Task Force to ease the situation.

The action plan for easing traffic in the national capital was submitted to the apex court last year and was prepared by a Task Force comprising representatives of the state government and Delhi Police.

Terming the statement by the lawyer Wasim Qadri, appearing for both the Centre and Delhi government, as “bald”, a bench of Justice Madan B. Lokur and Justice Deepak Gupta said, “You are not following your own plans.”

In a bid to decongest city’s traffic, the Task Force had identified 77 sites but the government acted only on five VIP zones in the NDMC area, including Dhaula Kuan, Sardar Patel Marg, Giayarah Murti (11 Murti) and Pachsheel Marg.

Taking a dim view of the way government and police was acting on their own plan, Justice Gupta said there was no planning where metro lines would commence functioning. There would be battery rickshaws and three-wheelers at the metro stations.

Observing that there was a scientific diversion of traffic whereby certain roads are made one way, the court stated: “You will remove them (encroachments) today or tomorrow; they will come back.”

The court observed that the bus stops were not properly located, and at some places, they were close to traffic signal lights.

Having stated its reservation over the manner in which action plan to decongest the traffic in the national capital was being implemented, the court merged the hearing of the matter with that of the Comprehensive Action Plan to deal with the alarming level of air-pollution.

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Centre to SC, will bring new legislation in 3/4 days to address pollution due to stubble burning

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Supreme Court

Solicitor General Tushar Mehta on Monday informed the Supreme Court that the Centre has taken a holistic view of the issue of air pollution in Delhi NCR, which also includes pollution due to stubble burning, and it intends to bring out a legislation in next three to four days to tackle this issue.

A bench headed by Chief Justice S.A. Bobde told Mehta, representing the Centre, it welcomes the Centre’s decision to establish a body to address the menace of air pollution. “Everybody is choking in the city, it must be curbed”, said the Chief Justice citing the menace of air pollution in the national capital.

Mehta replied the Centre will come out with the legislation in three to four days and the government is keen to establish a permanent body of experts to address air pollution.

“We can come out with the legislation in three to four days”, submitted Mehta, insisting that the top court should keep its earlier order, which directed formation of a panel headed by retired judge Justice Madan B. Lokur to monitor steps taken to curb the stubble burning issue in the neighbouring states of Delhi, in abeyance.

The top court reiterated that it welcomes this step by the Centre, in which it will create a permanent body by enacting a legislation to deal with the annual air pollution problem, which includes pollution from stubble burning in Punjab, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh.

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HC turns down NIFT students’ plea against fee hike

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Delhi High Court

The Delhi High Court has declined a petition filed by fourth-year students of National Institute of Fashion Technology (NIFT) against fee hike which they dubbed “arbitrary” and “irrational”.

“There are no grounds to warrant any interference by this court. There is no merit in the present petition and the same is dismissed,” said Justice Jay

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Farm laws: Rahul Gandhi urges PM Modi to protesting farmers

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Rahul Gandhi Farmers

Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Monday urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi to reach out to the farmers protesting against the three farm laws and give them a “healing touch”.

Sharing a news report about the protest of farmers in Punjab marking the festival of Dussehra by burning effigies of PM Modi and corporate companies against the Central government’s three farm laws, Rahul Gandhi said it is a “dangerous precendent” which is bad for the country.

“This happened all over Punjab yesterday. It’s sad that Punjab is feeling such anger towards PM. This is a very dangerou precedent and is bad for our country. PM should reach out, listen and give a healing touch quickly. ” Rahul wrote on Twitter.

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