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Business News/ Companies / News/  NGT issues notice to Volkswagen, Centre on emission norms violation
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NGT issues notice to Volkswagen, Centre on emission norms violation

The court grants two weeks to all parties to file their replies and fixed 23 December as the next date of hearing

The apex environment court issued notices to the ministry of heavy industries, Central Pollution Control Board, ministry of environment, forest and climate change and Volkswagen’s subsidiaries—Skoda Auto AS and Audi AG. Photo: Abhijit Bhatlekar/MintPremium
The apex environment court issued notices to the ministry of heavy industries, Central Pollution Control Board, ministry of environment, forest and climate change and Volkswagen’s subsidiaries—Skoda Auto AS and Audi AG. Photo: Abhijit Bhatlekar/Mint

New Delhi: The National Green Tribunal (NGT) on Monday issued notice to the central government and Volkswagen Group on a petition that accused the company of violating India’s emission norms and sought a ban on the manufacture and sale of its vehicles in the country.

The apex environment court issued notices to the ministry of heavy industries, Central Pollution Control Board, ministry of environment, forest and climate change and Volkswagen’s subsidiaries—Skoda Auto AS and Audi AG.

The court has granted a time of two weeks to all parties to file their replies and fixed 23 December as the next date of hearing.

Before issuing the notice, Swatanter Kumar, chairperson of NGT, questioned the petitioner how the tribunal could be seen to have jurisdiction to stop the sale of the vehicles allegedly violating emission norms.

“It must be seen that the pollution being caused is due to flouting of norms by vehicles manufactured by Volkswagen and its subsidiaries and this is the right forum to check this violation," said Sanjeev Ailawadi, legal counsel for the petitioner.

The petition said this has compromised public health and led people to believe that the company, by possessing the licence for manufacturing, assembling and sale in India, was following all rules.

The petition filed in the green tribunal on 24 November by Saloni Ailawadi, a school teacher, alleged vehicles from the Volkswagen group were violating emission norms and endangering the lives of millions of people and sought a ban on their sales until they conformed to India’s pollution norms.

The petition, a copy of which Mint has reviewed, claimed that all models on sale by Skoda and Audi are being manufactured using key components, design and technology provided by Volkswagen and are in violation of environmental norms as per the preliminary tests carried out by Pune-based Automotive Research Association of India (Arai).

It further claimed that the tests have found that the vehicles being manufactured, assembled and sold by Volkswagen and its subsidiaries are emitting up to nine times more NOx (nitrogen oxide) than permitted.

Earlier this month, the government issued a show-cause notice to Volkswagen after Arai found variations in on-road emission levels in diesel engine models of its Jetta, Skoda Octavia, Audi A4 and Audi A6 models.

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Updated: 30 Nov 2015, 02:21 PM IST
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