Delhi government and Centre continued to be engaged in blame-game even as North India reeled under thick blanket of smog on Day 6 on Sunday. The intensity of the smog which had settled on Monday morning can be gauged from the alarming visuals of iconic Taj Mahal, invisible behind smoke.
Whilst CM Kejriwal came up with a slew of solutions to fix the smog situation, h did not leave the oppourtunity to blame other states for burning crops and contributing to smog. At the same time, Union Minister Venkiah Naidu said that this situation does not reflect well on India's image at international level.
National capital Delhi on Sunday continued to reel under the worst air pollution conditions in last 17 years. A thick shroud of menacing grey haze blanketed the NCR region as pollution level breached the safe limit by over 17 times at places.
As a result nearly 17,000 schools running under the three municipal corporations of Delhi have been closed, affecting the education of at least 10 lakh students.
The severe pollution situation in Delhi prompted Chief Minister Arvind Kerjriwal to describe Delhi as a “gas chamber” as he sought the Centre’s intervention.
Kejriwal appealed to people to minimise the use of private vehicles in view of the situation and switch to public transportation facilities.
Also read | Ten things to avoid choking in Delhi’s pollution
The extent of pollution surpassed even the post-Diwali levels, while smog brought down visibility to around 200 metres across the city. Monitoring agencies recorded ‘severe’ quality air and advised people to avoid going outdoors.
Kejriwal told a press conference that the smog was mainly a product of raging farm fires in neighbouring Punjab and Haryana.
Also Read | Delhi chokes on worst air quality in 17 years: Rise in asthma, allergy, breathlessness cases
“Pollution has increased to an extent that outdoors in Delhi are resembling a gas chamber. Prima facie the biggest reason seems to be burning of stubble in agricultural fields in Haryana and Punjab in huge quantity,” Kejriwal told a press conference.
Kejriwal said vehicle restriction measures like ‘odd-even’ scheme will not be able to bring down the smog as initial studies suggest that the “large-scale” influx of pollutant-laden smoke from Punjab and Haryana has aggravated the situation.
He said the Delhi government has very few methods at its disposal and the Centre needs to intervene. (With Input from Agencies)
Also Read | Air masks flying off shelves as Delhi chokes on air pollution
Here are the updates:
#Environment in Delhi is becoming hazardous day by day, we have to think of a long term plan to curb this, says Anupam Kher
#Will start vacuum cleaning after 10 days: CM Arvind Kejriwal
#Badarpur plant closed for 10 days: CM Arvind Kejriwal
#Electric Generators banned in Delhi for 10 days: CM Arvind Kejriwal
#We may soon implement Odd-Even, Delhi should prepare for it: CM Arvind Kejriwal
#All schools to remain closed for next 3 days in Delhi: CM Arvind Kejriwal
#Artificial rain discussed during meeting, exploring the possibility: CM Arvind Kejriwal
#We appeal people to stay indoors and work from home: CM Arvind Kejriwal
#Construction or demolition banned in Delhi for next five days: CM Arvind Kejriwal
#Emergency measures are need; Instead of politicising Delhi's pollution issue, we need to solve it together: CM Arvind Kejriwal
Rohtak (Haryana): 3 dead, 2 injured after low visibility due to smog causes multiple vehicle collision on Rohtak-Gohana highway. pic.twitter.com/hNNYzkKEH3— ANI (@ANI_news) November 6, 2016
#Plan of action needs to be formed & implemented, this doesnt reflect well internationally as Delhi is the capital: Venkaiah Naidu
#What help do they need? Tell us. Have provided help time to time, implementation is State's responsibility: Environment Minister
#ISRO images tell us role of neighbouring states, their contribution is only 20%. Blaming them won't work: Environment Min
#States have a responsibility, advisories are issued and need to be implemented: Anil Madhav Dave
#Instead of blame game & politicising the issue it should be dealt with: Anil Madhav Dave (Union Environment Minister)
Delhi: Envt min Imran Hussain, AAP's Kapil Mishra & Dy CM Manish Sisodia reach CM Kejriwal's residence ahead of cabinet meet on pollution. pic.twitter.com/WzFeFTFqev— ANI (@ANI_news) November 6, 2016
#We'll hold protest every Sunday.This is an emergency, a crisis; politicians need to listen to us: Protester at Jantar Mantar #RightToBreathe
#Pollution is affecting kids' health; until or unless something is done, future is in dark: Sanjiv Kumar, protester #RightToBreathe
#Never has it happened that schools were shut due to pollution, frankly we cant raise children like this: Protester at Jantar Mantar, Delhi
#9 AM - Air Quality Index (AQI) from Delhi - PM10 in RK Puram at 999, in IGI Airport at 436, n Punjabi Bagh at 999, Shanti Path area at 662
Have asked farmers not to burn crops; have provided them with machines, but still few commit the mistake: Punjab CM Parkash Singh Badal pic.twitter.com/v7dn7lCKax— ANI (@ANI_news) November 6, 2016
#Delhi CM calls for an emergency cabinet meeting at 12:30 PM on issue of air pollution in Delhi
Muktsar (Punjab): Crop-burning, a major contributor to New Delhi's winter air pollution. pic.twitter.com/ybDGLT7Wzw— ANI (@ANI_news) November 6, 2016