High Court intervenes as Arvind Kejriwal and ML Khattar to meet in Chandigarh

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The Delhi High Court on Monday asked the traffic police and the transport department of the city’s Arvind Kejriwal government to check whether vehicles on Delhi roads were compliant with pollution norms.

Arvind Kejriwal

The HC observed that there was a rampant violation of rules.

A bench of Acting Chief Justice Gita Mittal and Justice C Hari Shankar said, “There has to be some checking. Rules are being violated rampantly.” The bench askedthe authorities why checks were not being carried out on a regular basis.

The court also blamed the police for not being vigilant even with regard to violation of traffic rules as people could been seen talking on phones while driving. The Delhi government’s lawyer, Satyakam, told the bench that there were “enforcement issues,’ reported PTI.

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The court’s observations on pollution checks assumes significance in the wake of heightened pollution levels in the national capital which has been covered by a thick blanket of smog for several days at a stretch.

Meanwhile, in a bizarre twist to the tale, both Kejriwal and his Haryana counterpart, Manohar Lal Khattar, on Monday agreed to hold meeting to find ways to end the alarming rise in Delhi’s air pollution. But none was willing to give a definitive time for the purpose.

Khattar, for his part, said that he was willing to meet but there was no response from Kejriwal’s office. He wrote in a letter, “I will be in Delhi on Monday and Tuesday. There is no response from your office on meeting.” He was, however, quick to blame Kejriwal for doing very little for the farmers in Delhi. He wrote, “There are 40,000 farmers in Delhi. What are you doing about them?”

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Responding to Khattar on Twitter, Kejriwal said, “Sir, my office is constantly trying to fix meeting.”

He later tweeted informing that Khattar had called him and had agreed to meet him on Wednesday in Chandigarh.

Kejriwal had recently urged chief ministers of Haryana and Punjab to meet to arrive at a solution to the dangerous rise in the air pollution affecting all three states. Haryana is ruled by BJP, while Punjab has Congress government led by Captain Amarinder Singh.

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Singh had slammed Kejriwal calling him a ‘peculiar person’ who has ‘his own viewpoints on everything without understanding the situation.’

Later social media users had posted photos establishing the severity of air pollution in Haryana and Punjab highlighting the poisonous air was hurting the population in these two states as much as it posed risks to people’s health in the national capital.

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