Delhi Gasps For Breath As Air Quality Continues To Deteriorate

An improvement in Delhi's AQI has been forecast from IITM and IMD in the next few days as a temporary relief from the smog blanket.

Weather: Delhi AQI nears severe zone

Delhi air quality continues to remain severe for the third consecutive day as an AQI (air quality index) of 413 was recorded on Saturday. 

Delhi Environment Minister Gopal Rai during his late night inspection on Friday at Anand Vihar bus terminus said BS3 petrol and BS4 diesel vehicles coming from Uttar 
Pradesh have been contributing to the deterioration of the air quality index as Anand Vihar's AQI at night touched 999 making it extremely hazardous. 

"Delhi government has been trying its best to curb the air pollution. Anand Vihar has the highest AQI. I came here and found out that all buses are BS3 and BS4 coming from Uttar Pradesh. I appeal to Yogiji to not send these vehicles to Delhi. Electric buses and CNG vehicles ply in Delhi. Bus depot manager, and traffic staff have also been careless to allow these banned vehicles inside Delhi," he said, reported HT.

Meanwhile, the rising pollution levels in Delhi has also heated up the national capital’s politics with BJP lambasting AAP for “failing” to curb deteriorating AQI.

Earlier, on Friday Delhi's 24-hour average air quality index reached 468, a stage in which all emergency measures, including a ban on polluting trucks, commercial four-wheelers, and all types of construction, are mandated in Delhi-NCR.

The officials said low wind speed contributed to the accumulation of pollutants near the ground making air unbreathable.

However, no further restrictions have been put in place apart from construction and vehicle curbs as the Centre's panel observed that these measures will take time to reflect on the air quality.

An improvement in Delhi's AQI has been forecast from IITM and IMD in the next few days as a temporary relief from the smog blanket. The overall situation is likely to remain the same until Diwali as Delhi's pollution peaks between November 1 to November 15 because of stubble burning in Punjab, Haryana, combined with Diwali crackers and weather impact.

At a high-level meeting with the LG and the government officials, it was decided that Delhi would appeal to Punjab to curtail crop residue burning by incentivising farmers. As Punjab is also ruled by AAP, Gopal Rai in the meeting pointed out that there was administrative failure.

"Delhi is surrounded by BJP-ruled governments, and we have requested that with their cooperation all the work should be executed," Gopal Rai said.