Air quality improves slightly, diesel curbs likely

Pollution,Ghaziabad city,air quality index

'Hazardous' air pollution in India's capital prompts emergency measures

While only Delhi environment minister Imran Hussain showed up, the environment ministers of Haryana, Punjab, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh reportedly skipped the meet and sent bureaucrats instead.

Scaling up WHO's own Air Pollution programme, globally, regionally and in countries, including through establishment of a Trust Fund with other partners on climate, environment and health, which could access climate and environment finance directly.

The EPCA has stopped all construction activities involving excavation and civil construction (excluding internal finishing/work where no construction material is used) till November 10.

Defending claims that stubble burning is the sole reason for Delhi's air pollution and not the city's traffic conditions or industries, CM Arvind Kejriwal reportedly blamed the Centre for not giving adequate machinery to the farmers in Punjab and Haryana.

The Delhi government has taken various steps to lower pollution levels, including banning construction activities in the city between November 1 and 10.

Reportedly, an aggressive 10-day-long "Clean Air Campaign" was also launched by the Union Minister while the Delhi Pollution Control Committee directed the traffic department to keep a strict vigil. If the AAP continues to be in slumber, then sadly all of us in Delhi will have to wear a #Mask4Life.

Mr Harsh Vardhan also said that there should be no politics over pollution, as it was a serious issue.

The apex court told the counsel appearing for the Delhi government that the NGT's order banning plying of 15-year-old petrol and 10-year-old diesel vehicles in the Delhi-NCR was passed on April 7, 2015 and an appeal against this order was dismissed by the top court on May 15, 2015.

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Around 177 vehicles have been prosecuted for carrying uncovered building material and amount of Rs 3,54,000 has been imposed as penalty on such vehicles, he said.

Meanwhile, the Delhi government said that it may bring back Odd Even scheme if the situation does not improve.

Apart from that, a total of 1,89,290 vehicles were checked this year till October 31, of which 391 vehicles were impounded as they were "overage", Kumar said.

The overall Air Quality Index (AQI) of the national capital was recorded at 370, which falls in the "very poor" category, according to data by the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB).

At Mathura road, major pollutant PM 2.5 was detected at 514 (hazardous), while in Lodhi road and Ayanagar area, the air quality dipped to the "poor" category at 263 and 382, respectively.

As per the CPCB data, the PM10 level in Delhi stood at 368.

Pollution is set to worsen until at least November 4, with high moisture trapping the pollutants and calm wind not allowing them to disperse, according to the System of Air Quality and Weather Forecasting And Research (SAFAR).

This is published unedited from the PTI feed.

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