"Pollution on, Arvind Kejriwal and Narendra Modi gone": Congresstext_fields
New Delhi: The Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal should resign and apologise for the lethal pollution levels in the union territory, Congress demanded on Friday. The party also sought a blueprint to address the situation in 15 days, PTI reported.
The air quality in the national capital region (NCR) remained severe on Friday, the second consecutive day, and a thick smog engulfed it. The situation is attributed mainly to the unfavourable climatic conditions and the rampant crop residue burning in neighbouring Punjab.
In a press conference in New Delhi, Congress leader Gourav Vallabh said, "Pollution on, Arvind Kejriwal and Narendra Modi gone." The statement was unmistakably a parody of the Delhi government's 'red light on, car off' campaign.
Vallabh said, "When pollution shoots up, both the chief minister and the prime minister leave Delhi and travel to Gujarat, Himachal Pradesh and elsewhere." Modi and Kejriwal are at the election campaign front at the moment.
He alleged that Modi and Kejriwal are tripping since they do not wish to breathe the toxic air in NCR. Since the CM accepted the responsibility for the poor air quality, he should step down from the chair immediately, Vallabh said. "He should apologise to the people," he said.
Citing a report by the Centre for Science and Environment, Vallabh said 33 per cent of the pollution in Delhi was due to local sources. He asked why the Kejriwal government did nothing to check local causes of pollution. The CM and the PM must sit together and come out with a blueprint in the next 15 days to improve the air quality.
Adding to this, Congress chief Anil Chaudhary said that the "smog towers" were a living monument of the Central and the NCR governments' failures.
"Pollution on, Kejriwal gone. Crores have been spent on the installation of smog towers in Delhi, but the tall claims made by the AAP and the BJP fell flat, he said.
CM Kejriwal had earlier said that primary schools would be closed from Saturday as the pollution levels surged. Environment Minister Gopal Rai ordered 50 per cent of the staff of the Delhi government to work from home and said an advisory would be issued to private offices directing the same.