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A PIL was today moved in the Delhi High Court to release and utilise public funds to augment public transport in order to curb the hazardous level of air pollution in the national capital. The plea, which also sought subsidised metro fare, came up for hearing before a bench of Acting Chief Justice Gita Mittal and Justice C Hari Shankar, which said a similar issue was pending for consideration before it. It said it was already seized of the issues of augmenting the DTC bus fleet in a time-bound manner and improving other public transport, including Delhi Metro and Northern Railway. "We are happy to hear public interest litigation (PIL), but we do not want multicipility ...
So the petition can be withdrawn," it said. Advocate Aman Panwar, appearing for petitioner Congress leader Ajay Maken, said he wanted to examine the issue pending before the bench. Agreeing with his contention, the bench listed the matter for further consideration. Maken, in his PIL, sought to address the issue of lack of coordination and unpreparedness of the Centre and the Delhi government in addressing, controlling and taking measures to prevent air quality from worsening and deteriorating health. He sought enforcing of the right to life guaranteed under the Constitution. The PIL said that Delhi NCR was in a grave crisis and a state of environmental emergency. Yet the central and state governments were playing blame-game and passing the buck to each other for non-performance of their statutory function to provide clean environment and affordable and efficient public transport to people living here.
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