New Delhi: As Delhi continues to tackle alarming levels of air pollution, chief minister Arvind Kejriwal on Friday claimed that pollution had reduced in the national capital by 25% in four years, citing a report by Central Pollution Control Board.
“We are open to suggestions from our people. Anybody who has any valuable insight as to how we can fight pollution can send in an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org by September 12," Kejriwal said while addressing a press conference on air pollution.
Delhi has faced criticism for high levels of pollution which has led to bad quality of air and raised health hazards. In the past, the government had to introduce policies like the odd-even car rationing scheme to improve air quality.
Highlighting four major action policies responsible for the dip in pollution levels, Kejriwal said “Pollution levels are no longer increasing in Delhi and a 24-hour power supply is the reason behind it. This has stopped the use of diesel based power generators."
He said the opening of the Eastern and Western peripheral way along with the imposition of heavy environmental compensation charges has reduced the entry of trucks in Delhi by 30% and contributed to a 7% fall in pollution.
He claimed that Delhi is only 35% responsible for the pollution caused in the state while neighbouring areas of Gurgaon, Faridabad, Ghaziabad and Noida contribute the most to the pollution levels in the state.
He said that the government’s effort to increase the forest cover and closure of thermal power stations in Rajghat and Badarpur had brought pollution levels significantly.
“Delhi is the only state in India and ranks third in Asia to have the largest network of 40 air quality monitoring stations. We strictly follow the Graded Response Action Plan (GRAP) to control pollution. We have a standard operating procedure which is followed differently in case of a severe pollution day or a very poor pollution day," the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader said.