Watch: Delhi under smog blanket, air quality remains ’very poor’

  • The air quality index of Delhi is ranging from ‘Very Poor’ to ‘Severe’ category amid continuous cases of stubble burning from Punjab and Haryana

Livemint
Updated5 Nov 2022
The air quality is worsening as the incidents of stubble burning continue unabated in Punjab and Haryana.
The air quality is worsening as the incidents of stubble burning continue unabated in Punjab and Haryana.(ANI)

The residents of the capital continue to breath the toxic air as the air quality index of the city ranged between ‘Very Poor’ to ‘Severe’ category. The city is engulfed with a thick layer of smog and visibility in areas around the 'Signature Bridge' remained relatively low.

 

According to SAFER, the forecasting agency under the Union Ministry of Earth Sciences, the air quality index of the city on Saturday morning was 431. The air quality is worsening as the incidents of stubble burning continue unabated in Punjab and Haryana.

On Thursday, the share of stubble burning in the PM 2.5 concentration in Delhi's air reached 34%, which according to experts is the main reason behind the thick smog. The areas around the capital are worse with AQI of 529 in Noida, 478 in Gurugram, 446 in Ghaziabad, and 463 in Faridabad.

On Friday, the Government of Delhi closed schools for the primary classes from Saturday and ordered 50% of the government staff to Work from Home. The government also asked the private sector to allow Work from Home so that vehicular emissions can be controlled. The AAP-led government is also mulling over the idea of re-introducing the 'Odd-Even Scheme' for vehicles.

The Commission for Air Quality Management (CAQM) has now invoked Stage IV of the Graded Response Action Plan, to tackle the worsening air quality. Stage IV of GRAP focus on restrictions like a ban on non-BS VI vehicles, and no entry of diesel trucks in the city, except for those carrying essential items.

The Commission has also advised citizens to follow Citizen Charter under GRAP and help authorities to ensure the implementation of all the guidelines.

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and his Punjab counterpart Bhagwant Mann took responsibility for stubble burning in the agrarian state and promised to eliminate the practice by next winter. The Supreme Court will also hear on 10 November, a PIL seeking fresh guidelines on stubble burning.

 

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