Home/ Industry / Manufacturing/  NGT pulls up Volkswagen over alleged emission cheat device

New Delhi: The Indian arm of German auto major Volkswagen AG, which had denied installing “cheat device" in their cars, on Tuesday faced searching questions from the the National Green Tribunal (NGT) which came down heavily on it for violation of emission norms in the country.

A cheat or defeat device is a software in diesel engines to manipulate emission tests by changing performance of cars.

“You announced a recall of 3,23,700 lakh vehicles in December last year. Why have you not recalled these vehicles till date? What are you doing to rectify the problem in your vehicles," a bench, comprising justice M.S. Nambiar and expert member B.S. Sajwan, asked the automobile giant.

The green panel asked Volkswagen to file an affidavit by 19 May stating what action it was planning to take with regard to vehicles allegedly fitted with the disputed software.

It also quizzed the automobile company over its earlier submission which had stated that “on road" emissions from its cars were 1.1 times to 2.6 times higher than the applicable Bharat State IV (BS IV) norms.

The counsel appearing for the auto major told the tribunal that recall of vehicles is a long procedure and it would take some time. He also said the company was developing a new software and would submit a proposal to the Automotive Research Association of India (Arai) in this regard.

When the bench asked the company whether the new vehicles fitted with EA 189 diesel engines were equipped with the controversial software or not the counsel for the company sought more time to seek instructions.

Advocate Sanjeev Ailawadi, appearing for one of the petitioners, said that the company has been selling faulty cars since 2010 and till date they have not done anything to rectify the problem which is causing health hazards.

“Various lawsuits have been filed against Volkswagen. Now the company is going for out of the court settlement with the government agencies and private petitioners. They have neither recalled nor made any modification in the engines," he said.

The matter is listed for next hearing on 19 May. The NGT had last year issued notices to the centre, Volkswagen and Arai on a plea by Delhi residents and a school teacher seeking a ban on sale of its vehicles for alleged violation of emission norms.

On 6 January, the green panel had directed the German automobile major not to sell any diesel vehicle in India fitted with “cheat device" and give an undertaking in this regard.

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Updated: 27 Apr 2016, 01:59 AM IST
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