Supreme Court prohibited any industry, operation or processes using pet coke and furnace oil as fuel with immediate effect until further orders in a Writ petition by Adv M.C.Mehta

Constitution of India, 1950 Article 32 Environment (Protection) Act, 1986, Section 5 - Writ petition - Air pollution - Prohibiting any industry, operation or processes using pet coke and furnace oil as fuel with immediate effect until further orders - No directions to any other State and Union Territory but all State Governments and Union Territories are requested to consider taking similar measures as taken by Government of India and Chairman of Central Pollution Control Board under Section 5 of Act, 1986.

GeekUpd8 Doc Id # 707651

SUPREME COURT OF INDIA

Before :- Madan B. Lokur and Deepak Gupta, JJ.
Writ Petitions (Civil) Nos. 13029 of 1985. D/d. 17.11.2017.

M.C. Mehta - Petitioners
Versus
Union of India & Ors. - Respondents

For the Petitioners :- Harish N. Salve, Sr. Advocate (A.C.), Ms. Aparajita Singh, (A.C.), A.D.N. Rao, (A.C.), Siddhartha Chowdhury, (A.C.), Petitioner-In-Person.
For the Respondents :- A.N.S. Nadkarni, ASG, S. Wasim A. Qadri, D.L. Chidanand, Ritesh Kumar, Zaid Ali, Saeed Qadri, S.S. Rebello, Ms. Nivedita Nair, Abhisehk Bharadwaj, Jai Dehadrai, Ms. Divya Prakash Pandey, Ajit Yadav, Ms. Saudamini Sharma, Ms. Pallavi Chopra, G.S. Makker, Ajit Yadav, Advocates.
For the CPCB :- Vijay Panjwani, Advocate
For the U.P. :- Ms. Aishwarya Bhati, AAG, Ms. Rachna Gupta, Siddhant S. Malik, Advocates.
For the Haryana :- Anil Grover, AAG, Ms. Noopur Singhal, Satish Kumar, Ajay Bansal, Gaurav Yadav, Sanjay Kr. Visen, Samir Ali Khan, Advocates.
For the Rajasthan :- S.S. Shamshery, AAG, Amit Sharma, Ankit Raj, Ms. Indira Bhakar, Ms. Ruchi Kohli, Advocates.
For the NCT :- Chirag M. Shroff, Ms. Neha Sangwan, B.K. Prasad, M/s. S. Narain, Advocates.
For the Mercedes Benz :- Gopal Subramanium, Sr. Adv., Akshat Hansaria, Amit K. Mishra, Pavan Bhushan, Ritesh Bajaj, Advocates.

ORDER

Report Nos. 72 and 76
On 13.11.2017, we had reserved orders on various applications filed for recall of the order dated 24.10.2017 regarding the ban on use of furnace oil and pet coke in the States of U.P., Haryana and Rajasthan.
2. Today, the learned ASG has placed before us a decision taken by the Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change of the Government of India on 15.11.2017 requiring the Central Pollution Control Board to issue a direction under Section 5 of the Environment (Protection) Act 1986 to the States of U.P., Haryana and Rajasthan prohibiting any industry, operation or processes using pet coke and furnace oil as fuel with immediate effect until further orders. It is clarified by the learned ASG that this is with respect to entire State and not only NCR region.
3. Pursuant to the communication dated 15.11.2017, a direction has been issued on the same date i.e. 15.11.2017 by the Chairman, CPCB under Section 5 of the Environment (Protection) Act, 1986. The direction is to the effect that there will be a prohibition on the use of pet coke and furnace oil by any industry, operation or processes within the the States of U.P., Haryana and Rajasthan with immediate effect until further orders.
4. It is submitted by the learned Amicus that a prohibition on the use of pet coke and furnace oil will solve only a part of the problem. A direction should also be issued to the effect there is a ban on the sale of pet coke and furnace oil in all these three States for being used as fuel.
5. The learned ASG says that he will look into the matter and will get back to us within a week or so.
6. We may note that pollution caused by pet coke and furnace oil is not a problem confined only to the NCR region but appears to be a problem faced by almost all the States and Union Territories in the country.
7. For the present, we do not propose to give any direction to any other State and Union Territory but we request all the State Governments and Union Territories to consider taking similar measures as have been taken by the Government of India and the Chairman of the Central Pollution Control Board under Section 5 of the Environment (Protection) Act, 1986.
List on 4th December, 2017.
Report Nos. 71 and 78 (REGARDING COMPREHENSIVE ACTION PLAN FOR AIR POLLUTION CONTROL AND SUPPLEMENTARY REPORT ON THE COMPREHENSIVE ACTION PLAN WITH TIMELINES)
List on 4th December, 2017 for final orders.
Report Nos.73 and 75 (ON THE ASSESSMENT OF POLLUTION UNDER CONTROL (PUC) PROGRAMME IN DELHI AND NCR)
List on 4th December, 2017 for final orders.
Application for Direction by the Amicus Curiae
8. Learned Amicus has moved an application in which it is prayed as follows:
    a) Direct the collection of a compensatory sum on petrol and diesel in NCR to be used for measures to deal with pollution in the NCR region.
    b) Direct that the charge so collected should be utilized by the Union of India to procure the requisite agricultural equipments for the farmers of Punjab and Haryana.
    c) Further direct that the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas examine the feasibility of existing technologies and present a workable scheme on the use and disposal of the crop stubble to this Hon'ble Court.
9. It is our impression that a prayer similar to prayer (c) has already been made in a writ petition filed and is perhaps pending before Hon'ble the Chief Justice.
10. On the request of the learned Amicus , we take the application on record but do not pass any orders since the learned Amicus says that he will move Hon'ble the Chief Justice.
Application for Direction by the Amicus Curiae
11. The learned Amicus has moved another application in which it is prayed as follows:
    a) Direct that sufficient gas supply be made available so that all power generation in the NCR region is from power plants using gas as their principal fuel.
    b) Direct a ban on import of pet coke and furnace oil and confine the use of domestic pet coke for the sole purpose of feedstock.
    c) Direct the implementation of the 2015 emission standards for power plants as per schedule i.e. by December 2017
    d) Direct the review of the status of existing coal based power plants and a timebound switch over to natural gas.
    e) Direct the Union to oversee measures to strengthen the distribution of electricity in the NCR region to ensure that there is no shortfall in availability of electricity on 24/7 basis.
12. Issue notice returnable on 04.12.2017.
13. Mr. Qadri, learned counsel accepts notice.
14. Learned ASG seeks some time to have instructions and file a response, if necessary.
Writ Petition(s)(Civil) No(s). 13029/1985
15. Several amounts running into hundreds if not thousand crores have been collected under various heads/accounts pursuant to various orders passed by this Court from time to time. We request the learned ASG appearing for the Union of India, Mr. Vijay Panjwani, learned counsel for CPCB and Ms. Aprajita Singh, the learned Amicus before us to sit together and identify all the heads and the amounts lying under those heads / accounts so that there can be proper utilization of these funds. The Registry is directed to give access to the relevant records, if necessary.
16. The learned ASG, Mr. Vijay Panjwani and Ms. Aprajita Singh, the learned Amicus may take the assistance of any other person that they feel necessary.
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