A Supreme Court mandated panel on Friday declared a public health emergency in the Delhi-NCR region as air pollution level plummeted to ‘severe level’ in the national capital. The SC panel also banned construction activity till November 5.
Describing the city as ‘gas chamber’ Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal has announced that all the schools will remain closed till November 5, even if he blamed neighbouring states of stubble burning and hence aggravating the situation.
A thick layer of smog possibly due to poisonous gases in air has enveloped the national capital since Diwali night when people brazenly brust crackers defying appeals from various corner to observe green Diwali this time. Since then, Air Quality Index (AQI) has been oscillating between ‘very poor’, ‘severe’, to ‘severe plus’ as Delhiites are gasping for fresh air.
As pollution level in the region entered the “severe plus” category, the Environment Pollution (Prevention and Control) Authority has banned the bursting of crackers during the winter season.
The air quality in Delhi-NCR deteriorated further Thursday night and is now at the severe plus level, EPCA chairperson Bhure Lal said in a letter to the chief secretaries of Uttar Pradesh, Haryana and Delhi.
“We have to take this as a public health emergency as air pollution will have adverse health impact on all, particularly our children,” he said in the letter.
As per reports, the Delhi Government may take emergency measures such as odd-even car rationing scheme and banning entry of trucks if air continues to be in ‘severe plus’ for more than 48 hours.