In a bid to cut down the increasing pollution levels, the National Green Tribunal (NGT) on Friday directed Volkswagen to deposit an interim amount of `100 crore with the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB), in a case related to allegations against the German auto major for using ‘cheat device’ in emission tests of its diesel vehicles.The ‘cheat or defeat device’ is a software in diesel engines to manipulate emission tests by changing the performance of the cars globally.
The automobile giant had earlier submitted a roadmap before the tribunal to recall over 3.23 lakh vehicles in the country fitted with a ‘defeat device’ meant to fudge emission tests.This is not the first time penalty has been imposed on the carmaker. It had earlier paid billions of dollars in fines in the US and then changed their business model too.The device can only work when the emissions are tested in a stationary car. When investigators tested the same car on the move, they found that emission levels were a few hundred times over the tested limit.
A bench headed by NGT chairperson Justice Adarsh Kumar Goel also formed a committee comprising officials of the Ministry of Environment and Forests, Ministry of Heavy Industries, CPCB and Automotive Research Association of India to calculate the actual quantum of the environmental loss. The NGT has directed the committee to submit its report within a month and asked Volkswagen and the petitioner in the case to appear before the panel within seven days. The order came on pleas filed by a school teacher, Saloni Ailawadi, and a few others, seeking ban on sale of Volkswagen vehicles for alleged violation of emission norms.