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Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal  (ANI)
Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal (ANI)

Delhi Cabinet approves installation of 20-cr 'smog tower' in Connaught Place

  • This tower will suck the air from the top and release filtered air near the ground, says CM Arvind Kejriwal
  • Cabinet also approved a tree transplantation policy to preserve the trees in the national capital

To curb the menace of air pollution, Delhi government has decided to set-up a 20-crore 'smog tower' in Connaught Place, announced Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Friday.

He said the tower will come up in 10 months. This tower will suck the air from the top and release filtered air near the ground, the CM said.

This tower will be in addition to the Central government's smog tower coming up in Anand Vihar.

Delhi government is also setting up a panel of national-level transplantation agencies whose services can be availed for relocation of trees. Local committees with RWA members and residents will monitor transplanted trees, Kejriwal said.

Under the tree transplantation policy, agencies concerned will have to transplant 80 per cent of the trees affected by their projects to a new location, he said.

Kejriwal said that a dedicated tree transplantation cell would be set up by the government under the new policy.

Stubble burning has started in Haryana and Punjab, which contributes significantly to the rise in pollution levels in Delhi and the National Capital Region.

In view of air quality in Delhi-NCR hitting poor level, a Supreme Court-mandated body Thursday announced implementation of graded response action plan (GRAP) from October 15 and a ban on the use of diesel generators, except for essential and emergency services in Delhi and the neighbouring cities of Ghaziabad, Noida, Greater Noida, Faridabad and Gurugram.

Delhi's air quality was recorded in the "poor" category on Thursday and is likely to deteriorate further due to unfavourable meteorological conditions and a spike in farm fires.

The city recorded a 24-hour average air quality index (AQI) of 208, which falls in the "poor" category.

The national capital's air quality turned poor on Wednesday, the first time since June 29, with the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) recording a 24-hour average AQI of 215.

The AQI was 230 on June 29.

An AQI between 0 and 50 is considered "good", 51 and 100 "satisfactory", 101 and 200 "moderate", 201 and 300 "poor", 301 and 400 "very poor", and 401 and 500 "severe".

The Ministry of Earth Sciences' air quality monitor, SAFAR, said the AQI is likely to be recorded in the "poor" category on Friday as well. However, it is expected to improve to the "moderate" category thereafter.

With PTI inputs

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