According to data from the Delhi Pollution Control Board, the levels of the pollutant PM2.5 was at a “hazardous” 644 was over 20 times the safe limit prescribed by the WHO prior to Diwali on Monday morning at south Delhi’s Okhla. PM2.5 are fine particles that can penetrate the lungs and cause respiratory diseases.
The reports of World Health Organisation says, smog kills more than one million Indians every year and Delhi has the worst air of any major city on the planet.
“As expected, there is a significant bio-mass pollution in Delhi, which has placed air quality in the very poor category despite moderate surface wind speed,” said an official with the centre-run System of Air Quality Forecasting and Research or SAFAR.
“A child who is born in Delhi is taking in gulps of bad air which is equivalent to smoking 20 to 25 cigarettes on the first day of his life,” said Arvind Kumar, a prominent Delhi lung surgeon.
Another weather official said, the contribution of stubble-burning to pollution in the national capital is expected to be 24 per cent today.
“If significant-stubble burning continues… in the NW (north-west) region, then its impact is very likely over Delhi and AQI may reach the upper end of the very poor category,” the IITM said.
The DPCC has directed the transport department and the traffic police to intensify checking of polluting vehicles and control road congestion till November 10. Construction work involving excavation is banned; no stone-crushers and hot-mix plants that generate dust cannot be run at this time.
(Featured image:The Indian Express)