The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) on Friday held a third round of meeting through video conferencing with the Chief Secretaries of Delhi, Haryana, Punjab and Uttar Pradesh and asked them to give a detailed report on how to prevent air pollution in the Delhi-NCR region.
The meeting was held with Chief Secretaries of four states through video conferencing under the chairmanship of NHRC Chairman Justice Arun Kumar Mishra regarding air pollution as the national capital and the NCR region continues to be covered with a heavy blanket of smog.
In the last hearing, the Chief Secretaries of Punjab, Haryana, Delhi and Uttar Pradesh were summoned to control air pollution in Delhi NCR.
In today's meeting, all the secretaries, while sharing the report, presented many more facts on the same issues. Now the next hearing has been fixed on 25 November.
While speaking to ANI, NHRC spokesperson Jaimini Kumar Srivastava said that a detailed discussion was held on stubble burning which is one of the biggest reasons for the bad air quality.
"The Commission had a discussion on how to provide the equipment to the poor farmers at the panchayat and body level free of cost so that they can harvest the paddy properly on time. Those who have the capacity to buy equipment should be made available at low cost so that farmers are not forced to burn stubble," he said.
Srivastava further said that apart from this, the Commission also asked the governments to provide proper equipment to the sanitation workers of the states.
"Be it the waste of hospitals or the dust on the roads, due to which air pollution increases, it should be managed. The Commission has asked for the details of how many mechanized devices are there to cope with the pollution caused by stubble burning and in what capacity they are being ordered. In many states of the country, various topics like pollution caused by stubble burning and deaths of sanitation workers, etc. were discussed with the Chief Secretaries of the states and instructions were also given to prevent and reduce pollution," NHRC spokesperson said.
In the last hearing, the Commission reprimanded the governments of four states, Punjab, Haryana, Delhi, and Uttar Pradesh holding them responsible for poor management of 'stubble burning' after hearing the version of the Chief Secretaries of the respective states.
NHRC heard the Chief Secretaries of Delhi, Haryana, Punjab and Uttar Pradesh on Thursday in connection with its suo motu cognizance of unabated air pollution in Delhi-NCR as reported in media. "The Commission, after considering the responses of the concerned States and the Government of NCT of Delhi, and the deliberations thereon is of the opinion that the farmers are burning stubble under compulsion," NHRC said in a press release.
Delivering the judgement, the National Human Rights Commission noted that the governments of the states mentioned above failed to obviate the recurring problem of stubble burning, which led to the deterioration of air quality.
"The State Governments have to provide harvest machines to get rid of those stubbles but they have failed to provide an adequate number of requisite machines and other measures, as a result, farmers were forced to burn the stubbles, causing pollution," the commission said, adding that none of the States can blame the farmers for stubble burning, instead, it is due to the failure of all four State Governments that the stubble burning is happening in the four States causing enormous pollutants in the air.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)