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Chapter III

Powers and Functions of The Commission

12. Powers and functions of Commission.-

(1) Notwithstanding anything contained in any other law for the time being in force, the Commission shall have the power to take all such measures, issue directions and entertain complaints, as it deems necessary or expedient, for the purpose of protecting and improving the quality of the air in the National Capital Region and adjoining areas and shall also have the duty to take all such measures as may become necessary for protecting and improving the quality of air in the National Capital Region and adjoining areas.

(2) In particular and without prejudice to the generality of sub-section (1), the Commission shall, for the purposes of sub-section (1), have the following powers to perform its duties, including taking measures to abate air pollution and to regulate or prohibit activities that are likely to cause or increase air pollution in the National Capital Region and adjoining areas, namely:-

(i) co-ordination of actions by the Governments of the National Capital Territory of Delhi and the States of Punjab, Haryana, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh, officers and other authorities under this Act or the rules made thereunder or under any other law for the time being in force, which is relatable to the objects of this Act;

(ii) planning and execution of a programme for the region for prevention, control and abatement of air pollution;

(iii) laying down parameters for the quality of air in its various aspects;

(iv) laying down parameters for emission or discharge of environmental pollutants from various sources whatsoever that have implications on air quality in the region:

Provided that different parameters for emission or discharge may be laid down under this clause from different sources having regard to the quality or composition of the emission or discharge of environmental pollutants from such sources that have implications on air quality in the region;

(v) restriction of areas in which any industries, operations or processes or class of industries, operations or processes, that have implications on air quality in the region, shall not be carried out or shall be carried out subject to certain safeguards;

(vi) carrying out and requiring investigations and research relating to problems of environmental pollution that have implications on air quality in the region;

(vii) inspection of any premises, plant, equipment, machinery, manufacturing or other processes, materials or substances and giving, by order, of such directions to such authorities, officers or persons as it may consider necessary to take steps for the prevention, control and abatement of air pollution in the region;

(viii) collection and dissemination of information in respect of matters relating to air pollution in the region;

(ix) preparation of manuals or codes or guidelines relating to the prevention, control and abatement of air pollution in the region;

(x) appoint officers, with prior approval of the Central Government, with such designations, as it thinks fit, for the purposes of this Act and may entrust to them such of the powers and functions under this Act or for the purposes of achieving the objects of this Act, as it may deem fit;

(xi) issue directions in writing to any person, officer or any authority and such person, officer or authority shall be bound to comply with such directions.

Explanation.-For avoidance of doubts, it is hereby declared that the power to issue directions under this section includes the power to direct-

(a) the closure, prohibition or regulation of any industry, operation or process; or

(b) stoppage or regulation of the supply of electricity or water or any other service.

(3) (a) Subject to the provisions of this section, any person authorised by the Commission in this behalf shall have a right to enter, at all reasonable times, and with such assistance as he considers necessary, any place, for the purpose of-

(i) performing any of the functions of the Commission entrusted to him;

(ii) determining whether and if so, in what manner any such functions are to be performed or whether any provisions of this Act or the rules made thereunder or any notice, order, direction or authorisation served, made, given or granted under this Act is being or has been complied with;

(iii) examining and testing any equipment, industrial plant, record, register, document or any other material object or for conducting a search of any building in which he has reasons to believe that an offence under this Act or the rules made thereunder has been or is being or is about to be committed and for seizing any such equipment, industrial plant, record, register, document or other material object if he has reasons to believe that it may furnish evidence to the Commission of an offence punishable under this Act or the rules made thereunder or that such seizure is necessary to prevent or mitigate environmental pollution;

(b) every person carrying on any industry, operation or process or handling any hazardous substance shall be bound to render all assistance to the person empowered by the Commission under clause (a) for carrying out the functions under that clause and if he fails to do so without any reasonable cause or excuse, he shall be guilty of an offence under this Act;

(c) if any person wilfully delays or obstructs any person authorised by the Commission under clause (a) in the performance of his functions, he shall be guilty of an offence under this Act;

(d) the provisions of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 (2 of 1974) shall apply to any search or seizure under this section as they apply to any search or seizure made under the authority of a warrant issued under section 94 of the said Code or, as the case may be, under the corresponding provisions of the said law.

(4) (a) The Commission or any officer authorised by it in this behalf, shall, for the purpose of analysis, have power to take samples of air from any factory, premises or other place in such manner as may be prescribed;

(b) the result of any analysis of a sample taken under clause (a) shall not be admissible in evidence in any legal proceeding unless the provisions of clauses (c) and (d) are complied with;

(c) subject to the provisions of clause (d), the person taking the sample under clause (a) shall,-

(i) serve on the occupier or his agent or person in-charge of the place, a notice, then and there, in such form as may be prescribed, of his intention to have it so analysed;

(ii) in the presence of the occupier or his agent or person, collect a sample for analysis;

(iii) cause the sample to be placed in a container or containers which shall be marked and sealed and shall also be signed both by the person taking the sample and the occupier or his agent or person;

(iv) send without delay, the container or the containers to the laboratory established or recognised by the Central Government;

(d) when a sample is taken for analysis under clause (a) and the person taking the sample serves on the occupier or his agent or person, a notice under sub-clause (i) of clause (c), then, -

(i) in a case where the occupier, his agent or person wilfully absents himself, the person taking the sample shall collect the sample for analysis to be placed in a container or containers which shall be marked and sealed and shall also be signed by the person taking the sample; and

(ii) in a case where the occupier or his agent or person present at the time of taking the sample refuses to sign the marked and sealed container or containers of the sample as required under sub-clause (iii) of clause (c), the marked and sealed container or containers shall be signed by the person taking the samples,

and the container or containers shall be sent without delay by the person taking the sample for analysis to the laboratory established or recognised by the Central Government and such person shall inform the Government Analyst appointed or recognised, about the wilful absence of the occupier or his agent or person, or, as the case may be, his refusal to sign the container or containers.

(5) In discharge of its functions and exercising of its authority, the Commission and the Sub-Committees mentioned in section 11 shall be bound by such general or specific directions of the Central Government, as may be issued from time to time.

(6) In particular and without prejudice to the generality of the foregoing provisions, the Commission shall perform all or any of the following functions, namely:-

(a) take up matters suo motu, or on the basis of complaints made by any individual, representative body or organisation functioning in the field of environment, against any individual, association, company, public undertaking or local body carrying on any industry, operation or process;

(b) provide the mechanism and the means to implement in the National Capital Region and adjoining areas-

(i) the National Clean Air Programme;

(ii) the National Air Quality Monitoring Programme;

(iii) the National Ambient Air Quality Standards;

(c) provide an effective framework and platform in the National Capital Region and adjoining areas for-

(i) source identification of air pollutants on a periodic basis;

(ii) taking on-ground steps for curbing air pollution;

(iii) specific research and development in the field of air pollution;

(iv) synergising the energies and efforts of all stakeholders in developing innovative ways to monitor, enforce and research on the issues concerning air pollution;

(v) building a network between technical institutions working or researching in the field of air pollution;

(vi) international co-operation including sharing of international best practices in the field of air pollution;

(vii) training and creating a special work-force for tackling the problem of air pollution;

(d) provide an effective frame work, action plan and take appropriate steps for-

(i) tackling the problem of stubble burning;

(ii) monitoring, assessing and inspecting air polluting agents;

(iii) increasing plantation;

(e) monitoring the measures taken by the States to prevent stubble burning;

(f) undertake and promote research in the field of air pollution;

(g) spread awareness regarding air pollution among various sections of society and promote awareness of the collective steps that the public may take through publications, the media, seminars and other available means;

(h) encourage the efforts of non-governmental organisations and institutions working in the field of air pollution;

(i) any other functions as have been entrusted to any ad hoc committee or commission or task force or body formed for the purpose of dealing with issues concerning air pollution, stubble burning or the monitoring of related factors, in pursuance of any judicial order passed from time to time;

(j) such other functions as it may consider necessary for the prevention of air pollution in the National Capital Region and adjoining areas.



Commission for Air Quality Management in National Capital Region and Adjoining Areas Act, 2021 Back




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