Delhi gasps for fresh air as pollution levels soar

Last Updated: Fri, Nov 01, 2019 09:26 hrs
Delhi pollution

New Delhi: The air quality in Delhi, which is already gasping for breath, further dipped to 500 in the ‘severe’ category, with officials pinning the blame on farmers of Punjab and Haryana for stubble burning.

According to data from SAFAR (System of Air Quality and Weather Forecasting And Research), the contribution of stubble burning to the haze and air pollution in Delhi-NCR is estimated to be 25 per cent on Friday.

A blanket of smog has engulfed Delhi since Diwali and with no relief in sight, pollution control authorities have recommended extending a ban on construction activities and shutting down coal-based and non-PNG industries in Delhi-NCR till November 2.

Doctors have advised people to take a lot of precautions, including wearing face masks and avoiding early morning and late evening walks as concentration of pollutants is at its highest during this period. 

Delhi’s pollution had reduced a notch after flaring up on the Diwali night but burning of crop residue increased and the wind changed direction in a manner that blew smoke from fields into the capital. 

The air over the capital is expected to remain very contaminated in the days ahead because the wind is blowing from the northwest and surface breeze over the capital is too weak to flush out fumes that are hovering over the city.

A new analysis released has revealed that people living in the Indo-Gangetic Plain region are expected to lose 7 years of their life because of severe air pollution. In a bid to battle the pollution, the Delhi government decided to deduct the salary of executive engineers of the PWD and other agencies if they fail to remove garbage and construction waste from areas under their control.