New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: The air quality in the national capital was in the 'unhealthy' category on Thursday. Major pollutants PM 2.5 is at 122 in the area around Major Dhyan Chand National Stadium and India Gate, according to the Air Quality Index (AQI) data.

This comes a day after PM 2.5 and PM 10 was recorded at 233 both in 'Poor' category. The Delhi government, which is constantly monitoring the situation, has shared satellite images taken by NASA. The images show large scale stubble burning in Delhi and adjoining areas.

It has also warned that air pollution is set to worsen in the national capital on account of an increase in the number of incidents of stubble burning in the neighbouring states of Haryana and Punjab. 

Meanwhile, the south corporation has intensified its anti-pollution drive and issued 134 challans to violators in the last couple of days amounting to over Rs 6 lakh.  

Here are key things you need to know:

1. The Delhi government has warned that the air quality in the national capital is set to increase because of the continuous rise of stubble burning in Haryana and Punjab.

2. Delhi minister Kailash Gehlot has also written a letter to Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan in which he asserted on the fact that the stubble burning in the neighbouring states in the month of November contribute largely in making the PM 2.5 levels higher.

3. He also requested access to System of Air Quality and Weather Forecasting And Research’s (SAFAR) data so that the administration could take immediate corrective measures to curb pollution.

4. “The smoke travelling to Delhi from stubble burning contributes to PM 2.5 emissions here. With the rise in number of farm fires in the past few days, there is a rise in concentration of particulate matter. Calm surface winds blowing over Delhi from the west and northwest are not able to disperse pollutants,” said an analyst from SAFAR.

5. Meanwhile, the Graded Response Action Plan (GRAP) has come into effect from October 15.

6. It is a plan which was first implemented in Delhi and NCR in 2017. It includes increasing bus and metro services, hiking parking fees and stopping the use of diesel generators when the air quality turns poor.

7. "Since the start of GRAP, the SDMC has intensified its efforts to curb violations. In the last two days, strict action been taken and challans issued for burning of solid waste, garbage, dry leaves, and plastic, rubber and construction activities in all four zones," the SDMC said in a statement.

8. According to some reports, the situation in Delhi may begin to worsen during the last week of October, when stubble burning picks up in the neighbouring states and decreasing day temperatures favour the accumulation of pollutants in the air.

9. The IMD, however, has predicted that the air quality is likely to improve due to changing weather conditions.

10. “A fresh western disturbance may impact the Western Himalayan region from October 18. It may also enhance the wind speed, which will help disperse pollutants,” news agency PTI quoted an official as saying. 

(With agency inputs) 

Posted By: Aalok Sensharma