Helped by strong surface winds and sunny weather, the air quality improved significantly across the National Capital Region of Delhi on Monday. After five days of consecutive smog and severe conditions, the skies over Delhi finally turned blue. According to government monitoring agency SAFAR, the overall AQI of Delhi stood at 211, which is exceptionally better in comparison to the conditions last week. Neighbouring Noida fared much better than Delhi with the AQI registered at 187. Gurugram had bit poorer score at 268. The Central Pollution Control Board, another Centre-backed watchdog, recorded below-300 readings across Delhi.
According to the CPCB, the worst air in Delhi was in Rohini with AQI of 258, while the cleanest air was in Aya Nagar with AQI of 104. Ghaziabad also recorded tad satisfactory scores. According to the CPCB, the overall AQI of Ghaziabad was registered at 228. Areas such as Vasundhara and Loni recorded a improved AQI of 227 and 235 respectively.
The Air Quality Index is a tool for effective communication of air quality status to people in terms, which are easy to understand. It transforms complex air quality data of various pollutants into a single number (index value), nomenclature and colour. There are six AQI categories, namely Good + Satisfactory, Moderately polluted, Poor, Very Poor, and Severe.
With the schools reopening and car-rationing scheme not in forces, Monday will the real test for government agencies. It will also help the monitoring agencies to understand the exact contribution of vehicular pollution in the overall smog situation of Delhi-NCR. Last week, the Supreme Court had rebuked four states for their inaction. The top court had said that odd-even was not a permanent solution as the affluent class would drive cars anyway. The top court had said that the car rationing scheme achieved nothing and termed it as failure. The top court also raised concern over exemption for two-wheelers given by the Delhi government. The Supreme Court has ordered the top officials of Delhi, Punjab, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh to be present in court on November 29. The states have been ordered to present their answers by November 25.