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Diesel Vehicles: Green Panel Refuses To Tinker With Supreme Court Order

National Green Tribunal hears a plea by five Delhi-based car dealers who sought modification of the December 11 order, which restricts registration of new diesel vehicles in Delhi

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The National Green Tribunal on Friday refused to vacate its order banning registration of new diesel-run vehicles, saying it won't interfere with the Supreme Court order which has taken a similar stand.

In contrast to the prior NGT order banning registration of all diesel vehicles, the Supreme Court, on December 16, though exempted small ones and specified that the diesel-run SUVs and cars having engine capacity beyond 2000 cc would not be registered in Delhi and National Capital Region till March 31.

"We don't want to even remotely come in the way of SC order. Supreme Court has comprehensively dealt with the matter. Besides there is specific order that no court or Tribunal order would come in its way.

"We will not say a word. Whatever the Supreme Court has said will operate. We are nobody to say anything and we don't want to interfere. We are simply adjourning the matter," a bench headed by NGT Chairperson Justice Swatanter Kumar said when some car dealers sought modification of green panel's order in the light of the Supreme Court order.

The green panel's observation came while hearing a plea by five Delhi-based car dealers who had sought modification of December 11 order which said there would be no registration of new diesel vehicles in Delhi.

Senior advocate Pinaki Misra, appearing for the car dealers, asked the Tribunal to modify its order in the light of Supreme Court orders.

Misra asked the Tribunal to modify the order so that the existing stocks of diesel cars be sold as the on line registration of vehicles was blocked.

"If the Supreme Court has passed a direction it will prevail over the Tribunal. We are not vacating or modifying any order. We will not utter a word. The highest court of the land is dealing with the matter, it doesn't look nice that we interfere," the bench said.

The apex court, while passing a slew of directions to curb pollution in Delhi, gave the time limit up to when the interim order on registration will operate.

It, however, did not specify the date from which the orders will come into effect and as a consequence, they become operational with immediate effect.

Making the directions overriding and final, the apex court had said, "...we direct that steps that we have indicated herein above shall be taken by all concerned in the right earnest notwithstanding any order to the contrary passed by any court or authority or Tribunal whatsoever."