Supreme Court barred registration of BS-IV vehicles until it decides on the matter of sale of such vehicles during the lockdown period. It also expressed displeasure on the sale, even after March 31 during coronavirus lockdown, of such vehicles far beyond what was allowed in relaxations.
The apex court also expressed displeasure on the sale of a large number of vehicles in March during COVID-induced lockdown. “An unusual number of BS-IV vehicles were sold during the lockdown,” said the bench headed by Justice Arun Mishra.
The top court will hear the matter again on August 13.
Earlier this month, SC had expressed displeasure over an oral plea by automobile dealers association that dealers should be allowed to return an unsold inventory of BS-IV vehicles to the manufacturers so that they could be exported to other countries.
The counsel appearing for the association told a bench headed by Justice Arun Mishra that there are some countries where the sale of BS-IV compliant vehicles are allowed.
The bench, headed by Justice Arun Mishra and comprising Justices B R Gavai and Krishna Murari, also asked dealers’ association, Federation of Auto Dealers (FADA), to provide the court with details of the sold vehicles either online or through direct selling during the lockdown period in the last week of March.
“You are in great trouble. We will prosecute somebody,” the bench told the counsel appearing for FADA. “We will take appropriate action against these fellows,” the bench said while referring to the surge in the number of vehicles sold especially on March 29, 30, and 31.
The top court had on July 24 expressed displeasure over an oral plea by the automobile dealers association that dealers should be allowed to return an unsold inventory of BS-IV vehicles to the manufacturers so that they could be exported to other countries.
FADA had said that there are some countries where the sale of BS-IV compliant vehicles was still allowed. However, the bench had observed, “Why should we pass orders for that? Manufacturers were aware of the deadline.”
On July 8, it recalled its March 27 order allowing car dealers to sell their unsold BS-IV vehicles for 10 days after the end of the lockdown. The decision came close on the heels of the top court pulling up the FADA in June and warning that relaxation norms had been flouted.