Day before Diwali, Delhi's dreaded smog returns; Air Quality 'poor'text_fields
New Delhi: The dreaded pollution in Delhi is back. The day before Diwali, the national capital awoke to a blanket of smoke as the air quality remained in the "poor" category.
According to the System of Air Quality and Weather Forecasting and Research (SAFAR), Delhi's overall Air Quality Index (AQI) was 251 at 6.30 am.
Images taken in east Delhi near the Akshardham Temple showed limited visibility as cars travelled through pollution.
Over the previous few days, the national capital's air quality has gotten worse. The overall Delhi AQI last night was 266. At 327, the air quality in the vicinity of Delhi University qualified as "very poor."
An AQI between zero and 50 is considered good, 51 and 100 satisfactory, 101 and 200 moderate, 201 and 300 poor, 301 and 400 very poor, and 401 and 500 severe.
Gopal Rai, the minister of environment for Delhi, announced Monday that the government has begun implementing its 15-point Winter Action Plan to combat air pollution.
In addition to other challenges, Mr Rai stated that the action plan will concentrate on dust pollution, managing stubble, open burning of waste, and cracking down on firecrackers. When the proposal was first announced in October, the minister stated that 39% of Delhi's air pollution is caused locally, and the remaining is caused by nearby National Capital Region areas, NDTV reported.
The production, storage, sale, and lighting of fireworks during Diwali are all prohibited by the Delhi government, and violators risk fines and jail time.
The Delhi government has launched the "Red Light On Gaadi Off" campaign to lessen traffic pollution. Public figures and officials will encourage commuters to stop their cars at red lights as part of the campaign.
The burning of stubble in the nearby states of Punjab, Uttar Pradesh, Haryana, and Rajasthan during the winter months also has an impact on the air quality in the nation's capital.