Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh on Friday said the state government would urge the National Green Tribunal (NGT) to reconsider the ban imposed on plying tourist vehicles on Rohtang Pass."It's in my knowledge that many transporters and vendors are facing problem due to the NGT decision and we will strongly take up the matter with it to reconsider its decision for the sake of livelihood of thousands," he said at a public function in Jagatsukh near here.At the same time he added: "We need to protect the rights of the people as well as protect the serene environment of the region."The NGT has allowed restricted movement of vehicles for three months from May 5 across the Rohtang Pass near the picturesque tourist resort of Manali to protect the fragile ecology.Each vehicle allowed to the Rohtang Pass for tourism purposes would pay an environmental cess at the rate of Rs.1,000 for petrol vehicles per visit. For diesel vehicles, the cess is Rs.2,500.
"The number of vehicles allowed to go to Rohtang Pass for tourism purposes shall be restricted to 1,000 per day on a first-come-first-serve basis," said the NGT, headed by Justice Swatanter Kumar.Listing the matter for the next hearing on May 25, the NGT said the ban on the tourist vehicles would be kept in abeyance till August 14. Earlier, the ban was effective from May 5.On double laning of the road linking Kullu and Manali towns, the chief minister said: "We have approached the World Bank for sanctioning funds for its double-laning and we got Rs.5.50 crore for this purpose."