High level panel formed to look into air pollution menace, Prakash Javadekar tells Rajya Sabha

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Published: November 21, 2019 3:47:37 PM

In recent times Delhi-NCR, as well as nearby states like Punjab and Haryana have been reeling under heavy smog.

Prakash Javadekar, union minister Prakash Javadekar Prakash Javadekar (file photo: IE)

With no respite to the toxic air quality in the National Capital Region and several parts of North India, the Centre said that a task force has been formed to look into the menace. The newly formed panel has also met regulary, the Rajya Sabha was informed today.

“In order to abate and control air pollution in Delhi NCR, we have undertaken several initiatives. A high level task force was constituted under the chairmanship of the Principal Secretary to the PM. Regular review meetings have been held,” Union Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar told Rajya sabha on Thursday, as per ANI.

Pointing out that a comprehensive air plan has been developed for Delhi-NCR, Javadekar added, “A comprehensive air plan for Delhi NCR has been developed identifying the timelines and implementing agencies for actions delineated. Centre has notified a graded response action plan for Delhi NCR for different levels of pollution.”

In recent times Delhi-NCR, as well as nearby states like Punjab and Haryana have been reeling under heavy smog, with the capital’s AQI plunging to hazardous levels for a few days. The situation was so bad that schools in Delhi and adjoining ares had to be ordered shut and a public health emergency declared. Construction works were limited, and the Delhi government also implemented odd-even scheme from November 4-15 to reduce pollution levels in the capital. The city government has, however, blamed stubble burning in Punjab and Haryana for the rise in pollution levels in the capital.

The Lok Sabha on Monday also debated the pollution issue. East Delhi MP Gautam Gambhir while speaking in the Lower House of the Parliament said, “The topic of discussion is something that affects everyone irrespective of our caste, creed, age and religion. It’s affecting us while we stand and talk about it in Parliament. It’s high time we stop politicising this issue,” ANI had quoted him as saying. He was earlier severely criticised for missing out a missing on pollution in the national capital, after a photo of him eating jalebi along with fellow commentator VVS Laxman appeared on Twitter.

The cricketer turned politician, while issuing a clarification had said, “If, my eating Jelebi is increasing the pollution in Delhi, than I can leave it forever. Within 10 minutes I was trolled. If they had taken the same effort in taking steps to reduce pollution, we could have breathed in fresh air,” he added as per the agency.

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