Supreme Court slams Punjab for stubble burning, calls for urgent action
Supreme Court rebukes Punjab over stubble burning, demands immediate halt
The Supreme Court expressed concern over stubble burning in Punjab and directed the state government to take immediate action to stop it. The court emphasized the urgency of addressing this issue and stated that it's essential to find effective solutions. It also highlighted the impact of stubble burning on air quality and pollution.
The Supreme Court made it clear that stubble burning needs to be halted and insisted that it's the Punjab government's responsibility to take action. The court called for immediate measures to combat this problem, indicating the seriousness of the situation.
Onus on the centre for alternatives
The court also placed the onus on the central government, suggesting that it should reconsider supporting the minimum support price (MSP) for paddy in Punjab. Instead, the court proposed exploring alternatives such as promoting millets as a more environmentally friendly option.
The court's directions came in light of the worsening air quality in several parts of Punjab and Haryana, where air quality indices reached 'severe' and 'very poor' levels. It stressed the need for immediate action to curb stubble burning, especially as farmers continued to set crop residue on fire, contributing to deteriorating air quality.
Data from the Punjab Remote Sensing Centre indicated that there were over 2,000 new stubble-burning incidents in Punjab on a single day, bringing the total for the season to 19,463 cases. These incidents constituted 61% of the total cases reported in the current season, although the overall number was 35% lower than in the previous year.
Need for joint responsibility
The Supreme Court emphasized that addressing pollution and environmental concerns is not the sole responsibility of the courts. It called for collective efforts, asserting that pollution control is everyone's duty.
Additionally, the court directed Rajasthan and other states to comply with its earlier orders regarding firecrackers during festive seasons. It urged the Rajasthan government to take measures to reduce air pollution and emphasized the importance of managing pollution collectively. The court's orders serve as a reminder of the shared responsibility to combat environmental challenges.