Delhi’s construction ban relaxed by the Supreme Court
In what comes as a breath of relief to the construction sector operating in Delhi, the Supreme Court reportedly partially relaxed the construction ban in the National Capital Region – giving the go-ahead for allowing work in the day time from 6am to 6pm.
The ban had been previously imposed due to the threateningly high pollution levels in the city – most of which was a result of construction dust and waste. This in turn resulted in a majority of government and private projects to be stalled – with locked up capital, future time and cost overruns and reorganising of labour.
Reportedly, Justices Arun Mishra and Deepak Gupta took into consideration the recommendation of the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) and therefore, partially changed its previous order allowing construction activities to resume in the mornings. All activity will still be required to stop in the night, until any further changes are made. Although given night time advantages of decongested sites and roads, most construction companies prefer to work during this time – the modification in the ban is still highly appreciated.
It is estimated that at present, the Air Quality Index (AQI) of Delhi has been improving, which persuaded the Supreme Court and the CPCB to lay out its decision. Additionally, in a bid to further combat pollution levels, the bench also gave suggestions and directions to the Centre on utilising technology like smog towers and other effective means.
According to further reports, it is expected that the court has also directed the Centre to form a committee to look into the matter and to work with the Delhi Government on the same, by including a principal secretary (environmental) in the committee.
Going forward, the court is also set to look at other pertinent causes of pollution – including that of stubble burning in UP and Haryana which will be presented to the bench on November 16.