Delhi Air Pollution: New curbs to come into effect from today; check what is allowed, what's not
New Delhi : Air pollution in Delhi has been under the 'severe' category from past couple of days, with prime reason of stubble burning amounting to 30% of the PM2.5 pollution in the capital.
Today, the Air Quality Index (AQI) at Noida (UP) is 529, 478 in Gurugram (Haryana) and 534 near Dhirpur, all in 'Severe' category. Delhi's overall AQI currently in 'Severe' category at 431.
On Friday, Punjab Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann and Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal took the responsibility of smoke and promised strict actions with results by next winter.
In a joint press conference, Kejriwal said, " Aam Aadmi Party is responsible if parali is being burnt in Punjab, farmers are not responsible for it." He further elaborated that this is not just Delhi's problem, instead it is also North India's problem.
"It is not a time to do politics, it will not decrease the pollution," Mr Kejriwal mentioned during the press conference.
The number of stubble burning incidents in Punjab rose 12.59 per cent year-on-year to 26,583 in the last 50 days, with a spurt in such cases after Diwali, according to the latest Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) data.
New curbs in Delhi to reduce air pollution
In a bid to decrease the air pollution in Delhi, the government has implemented new curbs. Here is a list of what is allowed and what is not.
What is allowed?
1. According to an order by the Transport Department, all CNG and electric trucks would be allowed to enter Delhi.
2. BS-VI vehicles and those used for essential and emergency services are exempted from ban.
3. For commuters' convenience, public transport services will be augmented. The transport department will hire up to 1,000 private CNG contract carriage buses through DTC for 60 days. It may be extended up to 90 days. In the first phase, 500 buses will be hired, it added. The plan will remain in force till further orders by the Commission for Air Quality Management.
What is not allowed?
1. The CAQM banned the plying of four-wheeled diesel light motor vehicles in Delhi and adjoining NCR districts.
2. Any diesel truck would not be allowed entry into Delhi except for those carrying essential commodities or providing essential services. Diesel-operated medium and heavy goods vehicles registered in Delhi will not be allowed to ply in Delhi except those carrying essential commodities or providing essential services.
3. The order issued by Delhi Transport Department also states that the BS-III petrol and BS-IV diesel light motor vehicle will be banned from plying in the areas under the jurisdiction of the NCT of Delhi. The department has also implied fine of ₹20,000 who violates the rules.
4. Closure of all industries not running on clean fuels. Industries like milk and dairy units and those involved in manufacturing life-saving medical equipment or devices, drugs, and medicines shall, however, be exempted from these restrictions
5. Ban imposed on construction and demolition activities includes projects such as highways, roads, flyovers, overhead bridges, power transmission and pipelines.
6. Factories and construction sites have also been shut.
7. Delhi environment minister Gopal Rai on 4 November also announced mandatory work-for-home for 50 percent Delhi government employees.
8. Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal announced the closure of primary schools from today, till the air quality improves in the city.
9. Schools have been shifted to online classes up to the eighth grade in Noida.