We may get only two days to implement odd-even scheme: Jain

New Delhi, Jan 17 (IANS) With the Union Environment Ministry notifying an action plan to curb air pollution, including the odd-even scheme, Delhi Transport Minister Satyendar Jain on Tuesday said he had learnt that the city government will get only two days to implement the traffic restriction plan in case of rise in pollution levels.

Jain said he had learnt that the government will have to implement the odd-even measure to curb pollution in case of contingency but said the government needs more time to make people aware.

“We will do it when needed. I had requested that the Union Environment Minister make provision of at least seven days’ time for starting odd-even scheme, but I have come to know that in the notification (of graded response system) the time given is only of two days,” Jain said.

Jain added that he had not yet seen the notification.

The Environment Ministry on Monday notified the action plan to implement a graded response system for air pollution, including implementation of the odd-even traffic rationing policy.

The Supreme Court had on December 2 asked the central government to notify the Graded Response Action Plan for air pollution, which talks of initiating a set of measures when Particulate Matter (PM) 2.5 or PM 10 reaches specific levels in Delhi and the National Capital Region.

The plan has been made by the Supreme Court-authorised Environment Pollution Control Authority (EPCA).

The set of actions includes the implementation of the odd-even scheme and shutting of construction work if PM 2.5 crosses 300 micrograms per cubic metre (µg/m3) or PM 10 crosses the 500 mark.

EPCA will implement the plan in collaboration with the governments of Uttar Pradesh, Haryana and Rajasthan and is slated to hold a meeting with the stakeholders this week.

According to EPCA officials, a meeting will be held with Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB), state pollution control authorities and the Meteorological Department on Friday.

These agencies will make a framework to provide information on pollution levels and air quality forecast.