With a view to check contamination of ambient air, the state government had in November 2019 decided to ban operation of diesel autos in Patna municipal area from January 31.

PUBLISHED ON JAN 13, 2021 01:53 PM IST

Diesel-powered autos will continue to ply on the roads of Patna and adjacent townships till September 30.

With a view to check contamination of ambient air, the state government had in November 2019 decided to ban operation of diesel autos in Patna municipal area from January 31. Owners of the diesel autos have been asked to install compressed natural gas (CNG) conversion kits or replace their vehicles with electric operated vans within the revised deadline.

The state cabinet on Tuesday at its meeting chaired by chief minister Nitish Kumar gave its nod for the transport department’s proposal to extend the deadline for ban on plying of diesel autos under Patna municipal corporation, Danapur, Khagaul and Phulwari Sharif city council limits.

As per the earlier cabinet decision, diesel autos were to be banned in Danapur, Khagaul and Phulwari Sharif areas with effect from March 31, 2021. An officer of the transport department said that the deadline for plying of diesel autos was extended in keeping with the public interest, as the local transport sector was hit hard due to the Covid-19 outbreak and the state elections.

This was among the 16 policy matters that the cabinet approved after discussions with the ministers and officials concerned. The unions of diesel auto drivers had also threatened to observe the government ban in breach if the deadline was not extended and appropriate facility was not developed for conversion of their autos for retrofitting with CNG kits.

The cabinet also decided to hand the management and maintenance of newly created or developed public water bodies under Jal-Jivan-Haryali mission to the self-help groups of Bihar State Rural Livelihoods Mission (Jiveeka). Jiveeka volunteers have also been authorised to run community kitchens for indoor patients at all district and sub-divisional hospitals.

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