Air pollution in Delhi and Punjab continued to reach high levels as the air quality remained "severe" in the northern regions of the country on Friday. In Delhi, the air quality was in the severe category for the fourth day.
Air pollution in Delhi and Punjab continued to reach high levels as the air quality remained “severe” in the northern regions of the country on Friday. In the national capital, the air quality was in the severe category for the fourth day, even as a steady breeze slightly decreased the city’s air pollution levels. The influx of dust from Rajasthan has slowed down significantly and local winds in Delhi have picked up due to which dispersion of pollutants have become faster and the air quality is expected to return to “very poor” level from “severe” by tomorrow.
As per news agency PTI, the PM10 level (presence of particles with diameter less than 10 mm) was recorded at 626 in Delhi-NCR and 650 in Delhi, leading to hazy conditions. The PM2.5 level (presence of particles with diameter less than 2.5 mm) that deteriorated from “very poor” to “severe” showed improvement today at 164 in Delhi region and 162 in Delhi-NCR.
Delhi L-G Anil Baijal had yesterday ordered stoppage of all civil construction activities across the national capital till Sunday as a part of the emergency measures that also include intensifying mechanical road sweeping. And just a day after the LG’s order, over 170 challans were issued and 12 buildings sealed in south Delhi by the area’s civic body. Meanwhile, the North Delhi Municipal Corporation (NDMC) in a statement today claimed it has issued challans from June 11-15 and imposed penalty worth “over Rs 20 lakh in that period” for various violations of the National Green Tribunal norms.
The dust storm in Rajasthan led to worsening of air quality in Punjab. The state pollution control board has, therefore, issued an advisory for restraining all construction activities, including carpeting of roads, till the situation improves. As per the Punjab pollution Board, Air Quality Index in Ludhiana was 443, in Amritsar it was 454, in Mandi Gobindgarh its was 440, Khanna 389, Patiala 403, Ropar 417, all fall in “severe” category of air quality. In view of severe dust pollution, the Haryana State Pollution Control Board (HSPCB) had yesterday issued an advisory that no construction activity could be carried out for the next two days in districts falling under the National Capital Region (NCR)
The India Meteorological Department (IMD) has said that strong dust raising winds of the order of 2,535 kmph is likely to continue over Rajasthan, Punjab, Haryana, Chandigarh and Delhi during the next 24 hours. It also forecasts thunderstorms at isolated places over the city in the coming days, bringing relief from the dusty air.