NEW DELHI: Union Road Transport and Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari on Monday gave his nod to a "green tax" on old vehicles polluting the environment, on the principle that polluter pays. It will be formally notified after consultations with the states, his ministry said.
Private vehicles like cars and two-wheelers will have to pay a higher green tax @50% of the road tax for vehicles registered in highly polluted cities like Delhi and Mumbai. The private vehicle owners will have to pay it at the time of registration certificate renewal after 15 years.
The minister also approved the policy of de-registration and scrapping of vehicles owned by Government department and PSUs, which are above 15 years in age, but it will come into force only from April 1, 2022.
Since the commercial vehicles, though constituting 5% of the total vehicles, contribute about 65-70% of the total vehicular pollution, those older than eight years will be charged @10% to 25% of the road tax at the time of renewal of the fitness certificate. Even public transport vehicles, such as city buses, will be charged lower green tax.
Exempted are vehicles used for farming, such as tractors, harvesters and tillers, as also vehicles with hybrid fuel, electric vehicles and alternate fuels like CNG, LPG or ethanol.
The rates drawn up in the draft notification vary for different fuels like petrol and diesel as also type of vehicles. Revenue collected from the Green Tax is to be kept in a separate account and used for tackling pollution, and for enabling the States to set up state-of-the-art facilities for emission monitoring.